I’ll be on City Lights radio tonight at 7 pm, talking about digital distraction with Neema Moraveji and Stephanie Brown.

City Visions Radio presents: Texting and Tranquility: Finding mental calm in a sea of technology and distraction

Airs live on Monday April 15, 7:00 pm, KALW 91.7FM San Francisco
Call-in number: (415) 841-4134

According to an online survey conducted in 2010, over half of American respondents reported feeling “addicted” to the Internet, with an even higher percentage for young people. When the Pew Center Research Center polled smartphone users, they found that most people check their email every single time they receive a new message, and many recheck their devices up to 40 times an hour. Almost half of those polled also reported sleeping with their phones next to the pillow and also experienced “phantom rings,” where they reflectively check for new email or texts even when their phones make no sound.

Here in the Bay Area, we are especially wired to technology, with start-up companies and entrepreneurs launching new apps, products and programs on what feels like a daily basis. Yet many of us struggle to manage the demands of technology with the need to be mentally present, connect with family and make thoughtful decisions.

Why is it so hard to put down our iphones and unplug our digital devices? What does technology do to the brain that makes it so addictive? How can people balance the urge to be online with the need for mental calm? And what is the impact of our ever-connected lives on relationships, work and decision-making?

It should be fun, as I know Neema and his work, and have heard of Stephanie Brown’s addiction clinic. Plus it’ll be good to hear what questions and concerns people share.