Waking up feeling out of sorts last weekend, I forced myself to take my dog to Juno beach. It was Sunday, hot, and every man and his dog were there. Summer is coming with a vengeance. I tried to enjoy myself but soon became aware of my constant sneezing, runny-nose, and aching head.

The next day my cold or suspected flu was full-blown, so I took myself off to my Doctor. I waited there for two hours feeling miserable, in the second hour, this precocious two-year-old ran around with an iPhone in her hand blaring out a loud game while she responded screaming her gibberish back at the phone. I turned to look at the mother, she was wholly absorbed in her phone and was oblivious to what her daughter was doing.  I politely asked if she could turn down the sound on her daughter’s phone. Not only did I have a headache, but I also wanted to listen to CNN.

The mother took the phone from her child and was attempting to turn it down while telling me that the child would turn it up again because she knew how it worked. I asked if it was a real phone, as I was stunned to see this child (two-years-old) with a phone. The mother explained that it was her old phone, it had no service but had Wi-Fi connection for the child to access games. Thirty minutes later this child was still running around with a phone that barely fits in her hand, while the mother yet assimilated with what she was doing on her phone. Something came on CNN that I wanted to hear, I stood up and walked closer to the screen, within seconds this child came running past me making the same noises she had been for the last hour. I immediately bent down and told the child to be quiet, with my expletive, Shh-hh! It came out louder than expected.

Well, the mother sprang into action, immediately accusing me of having no right to tell her child to be quiet, and saying they come into the office weekly and nobody seems to mind. With her sudden outburst and my thumping head, I was quick to spar with her. However, I spoke gently and suggested that she should use this as an opportunity to teach her child some manners. Her reply was adamant. “She is only two-years-old, what do you expect?” I commented that she was in a public place and should respect the number of people waiting patiently to see their doctor. She was about to explode at me with a look of how dare you to tell me how to raise my child. Right at that moment, I was called on to see the doctor. I smiled and walked away with the nurse.

I got to thinking about all those people you see staring at their smartphones, almost everywhere you go, it has got to the point of amusement to see how people are addicted to them. Even in a restaurant, as people wait to order, there is no conversation going on, but instead, heads bent towards their phones.

I did some research on the subject and was astounded. I read that per a former Google product manager, in Silicon Valley, that his company intentionally engineer the phones, apps and social media to get consumers hooked. He admitted that they have programmers who work solely on getting the user to feel the need to check their phone regularly.  He describes it as “brain hacking,” and in the tech world, they probably prefer you didn’t hear about it.

Remembering Anderson Cooper’s closing statement in 2017, television Show – 60 Minutes, he said,  “I think a lot of this boils down to how individuals, parents, and kids, educate themselves about the power that these devices have on our brains.”

Now for my articles essence. Here is a quote that proves my concern for the young children who are sadly growing up in a world where there is no need to Imagine. All they must do is to turn on the IPad or iPhone that mommy or daddy gave them to keep them occupied while mom or dad go back to their Computer, Laptop, I-Phone, or IPad.

 We do not need magic to change the world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already. We have the power to imagine better.”   ~ J. K. ROWLING

Remember when you were a child, the way you would use your imagination to invent a new friend, become an action figure, or play being an outlaw, cowboy, ninja, singer, dancer or comedian?

People existed in your imagination and you were free to imagine what, or whomever, you wanted to be on any given day or time. What would happen in your life if you began to generate that kind of freedom? Not only for yourself, but also for your children, family, employees, and customers? You would get to win the battle by gaining back that childhood freedom and courage to think outrageously.  In my speeches, I introduce imaginary case scenarios and then present improvisation challenges to exercise my audience ability to think and imagine. They may be asked to believe that some life-threatening situation has happened with no tools for survival except your ability to think your way out.

Did you know that Abraham Lincoln, had a natural ability to tell stories to make his point? You can learn to do the same, because it worked for him through times of significant change, adversity, and making tough choices. I began using his method, and it worked over and over. My life journey is full of stories.





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