Are you USING your tools or are your tools USING you?

A friend and I have debated many times whether he should get involved on social media. He’s a businessman and a writer, so whenever we have this conversation I point to the many conveniences I experience by being digitally connected through social media.

His argument is based on the premise that social media can steal your time, so he struggles with opening a portal that may introduce wasted time into his life.

Although we share differing opinions, I can respect his position.
Neither of us is wrong.

All too often I’ve seen tools we should be using to make our lives more effective, end up being misused by the people engaged with them. In many ways, the tool is using the person.

This unfortunate shift leads me to this week’s question for reflection.
Are you USING your tools or are your tools USING you?

Just about everything in this world can be used to serve a beneficial purpose.
Just about everything in this world can be misused, in a way that can hurt us.

For example:
Morphine is made from the same poppy seeds that produce heroin. Morphine is a necessary painkiller for many medical procedures. Heroin, is a horribly addictive drug that leaves most users addicted, thus destroying their lives after just one experience.

The cocoa leaf can be used as a tea or chewed to defibrillate the lungs at high altitudes. The cocoa manipulated along with other ingredients can also be used to produce cocaine.

Alcohol, in one glass of wine every evening can extend your life expectancy. Alcohol in multiple glasses of wine or whiskey every evening can deteriorate the liver and reduce your life expectancy.

Can you begin to see how tools that are misused can be detrimental?

A couple of weeks ago, I went on a rant about the evils of television on my radio show.  In hindsight, I should have been more specific. Television used properly, can be a powerful tool. I ranted so adamantly against television because misused, it can also be the ultimate time waster.

I often marvel at how quickly technology has advanced in our lifetimes. We have been armed with tools for productivity unlike any generation before us. Yet, these same tools have caused us to become more fragmented than any other generation.

Does a cell phone really need to be in the bed with you?
Have you become so connected to the games you play, the tweets you send and receive and your Facebook timeline updates that you’re missing what’s happening in REAL life?

Are you USING your tools or are your tools USING you?

Being connected in this digital age brings a plethora of conveniences.
But alas! Being connected is just a TOOL.
Who’s really in control?

Recently, I noticed that I was spending almost twenty to thirty minutes a day looking at shopping deal applications on my smart phone. I would check out Groupon, then peruse Living Social. A bit after that, I would pop over to Gilt and end with either HauteLook or Rue La La. After all, I wouldn’t want to miss a deal! Right?

Then it hit me!
That’s exactly what these business’ marketing teams wanted me to do.
If my behavior is serving them, then it’s probably NOT serving ME!
The shopping deal apps are a tool.
Now I surf them when I have a need.

This week I want us all to be aware of how we use the TOOLS in our lives.

Are you USING your tools or are your tools USING you?

If you have a suspicion that your tools may be using you, do the following:
Make a list of the TOOLS that might be using you.
Create a plan on how you will regain control over these tools.
In the case where you feel powerless to create a plan, you may need to completely dispose of that tool.

toolWhatever the means, REGAIN control!
Remember, you are the master!
These tools serve you!
Break whatever chains have enslaved you to a tool!

The result?

A better, more effective YOU!
After all, we’re striving to live the best life possible!
…and the best life, is a life of FREEDOM and INTENTIONAL decision-making.

Regain control!
Be your own master!

…and in the meantime, stay inspired! It’s a lifestyle choice!

About the Author:

Linal Harris Global Entrepreneur – Certified Life Coach – Media Personality – Speaker Linal Harris is a global entrepreneur, certified life coach, author, and media personality. As the founder of Inspirational Perspective® Publishing, LLC and Insights 4 Life™ Coaching, LLC, Harris challenges his global audience and coaching clients to Murder Mediocrity® and live their best life possible. Harris concentrates his work as an ontological coach with clients on what he calls the 4 pillars of life; the relationship we have to ourselves, the relationships we have with others, our relationship to work and money, and the connection we have to our spirit and life’s purpose. Harris coaches CEO’s, executives, entrepreneurs, athletes and celebrities. Harris is the author of “Slay Your Goals”, where he provides his readers with scientific and research backed tips for achieving their goals. Harris is an expert goal-setter and has been called upon by Fortune 500 companies to assist with setting their strategic priorities, facilitate goal-setting sessions and provide inspirational talks. To stay connected, be sure to follow me on the following social media outlets by hitting the links below:

For daily inspiration – text “INSPIRED” to 43783 – Enrollment is free!

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