What captures the attention of toddlers and infants most at Disneyworld? The costumes? The animations? The rides? The toys?
Nope, none of these things. According to a recent study, it’s their parents cellphones! Kare Anderson, one of the researchers, comments:
Those kids clearly understood what held their parents’ attention — and they wanted it too. Cell phones were enticing action centers of their world as they observed it. When parents were using their phones, they were not paying complete attention to their children.
Among Anderson’s conclusions are:
- Giving undivided attention is the first and most basic ingredient in any relationship.
- Whatever we pay attention to has a huge effect on how we see the world and feel about it.
- Others know what’s the center of our attention and thus what controls our life.
I have very little memory of my grandmother on my Dad’s side, but the one thing I do remember from my vacation visits to her home in the Scottish Highlands, and from her year of staying with us in the lowlands, is that a large black book had her full attention.
When my kids look back on my life I hope they see that what had my attention and controlled my life was a black book. Not a black phone.