Turn Off Your Stupid Smart Phones

Greetings everyone……I have some important advice:  Turn off your stupid smartphones, iPhones, cell phones, laptops, video games–whatever!  I exaggerate of course, but recent research is indicating that as electronic communication has grown, our attention span is decreasing, our intellects are weakening, and human connections have declined. We are close electronically.  Yet we are drifting farther away from one another personally.  I read a report recently that referred to this phenomenon as phubbing.  Phubbing is the practice of snubbing others in favor of our mobile phones.  We’ve all been there, as either victim or perpetrator. 

The time couples are able to be “present” with one another, is crucial for feeling emotionally connected. I am not suggesting you have to be present with your partner 24/7. But being present at various times of the day with your mate is critical for fostering your connection with each other.  Otherwise, emotional distance will definitely set in, which is often the source of nagging and criticism.

Modern technology, meant to keep us all connected, actually creates distance in couples even when we’re not aware of it. Every couple needs to have technology-free time to experience each other with full non-distracted attention.

Homework:  Sit down with your partner and make rules for technology-free time.  Suggestions:

    1. Phones off and out of sight during food preparation and eating meals.

     2. No taking calls when we’re in the middle of a conversation or we have people over–calls can be returned later.

     3. Set aside time to set down with each other and check-in, make plans, have a conversation–without answering any calls…..  I call this a “ritual of connection.”

     4.  If it’s absolutely necessary to take a call, do so out of earshot of others.

Jim Covington

Jim Covington

Jim Covington (M.Div. MA, LMFT) has been helping couples improve their relationships for more than 30 years. He holds degrees are in psychology and theology, is a licensed New York marriage and family therapist, a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists and has been trained in multiple approaches to marital/couples therapy and family therapy.

He has completed Level 3 Practicum Training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy, externship training with the International Center for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples and PREP (Prevention & Relationship Enhancement Program), and employs Solution Oriented Brief Therapy as taught by Michelle Weiner-Davis.
Jim Covington

Jim Covington

Jim Covington (M.Div. MA, LMFT) has been helping couples improve their relationships for more than 30 years. He holds degrees are in psychology and theology, is a licensed New York marriage and family therapist, a clinical member of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapists and has been trained in multiple approaches to marital/couples therapy and family therapy.

He has completed Level 3 Practicum Training in Gottman Method Couples Therapy, externship training with the International Center for Excellence in Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) for couples and PREP (Prevention & Relationship Enhancement Program), and employs Solution Oriented Brief Therapy as taught by Michelle Weiner-Davis.