New Tech; Old Trick

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Cal Newport, author of the recently-released Digital Minimalism, offers a piece of advice on his blog that he says he wishes he'd given in the book. He names it after the practice of parents who had their land lines in out-of-the-way parts of the home, way back when land lines were useful:

I guess having it tied down was an advantage... (Image by Hello I'm Nik, via Unsplash, license.)
The Phone Foyer Method

When you get home after work, you put your phone on a table in your foyer near your front door. Then -- and this is the important part -- you leave it there until you next leave the house.
As you might expect, Newport elaborates and gives a few exceptions to this rule, which is close to what I do about half the time I am awake and at home with the kids: Mine sits on a charger on the standing desk in my office.

I like the idea of this as an intentional strategy for becoming more present at home and plan to do this as often as practicable.

And for those who -- like me -- often work at home and are a primary contact for kids in school? I use a sort of soft blacklist for pocket dialers and others who do not need to reach me during work hours (but disturb me anyway). My new name for it is the silent ring tone club.

-- CAV

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