Thursday, August 26, 2010

Mirrix Looms: An Escape From The Screen

Mirrix Looms: An Escape From The Screen

After listening to an interview on NPR about the effects technology has on the brain, I started thinking about my own life and my own consumption of technology. My morning went like this: Woke up to the alarm on my Blackberry. Groggily turned on the coffee machine and plopped down on the couch with the news on and my iPad in front of me. My husband went straight to his laptop.  The phone rang. At 6:45 am. He answered. I started up my iMac. He removed his iPod from the dock and kissed me goodbye. I called in for my morning Skype meeting and my day (in front of the computer) began.

I assume I fall somewhere in the technology-heavy side of the population but I’m sure many people have similar mornings. And evenings. And afternoons. The interview that brought this up discussed a retreat (sans cell phone reception) of several scientists studying the effects of technology on the brain. The goal was to go on vacation and see the device-less time “through a neurological lens”.  Plainly put, the scientists’ general conclusion was that people need time when they are not stimulated by technology to process information. In studies done with mice, after learning new things, it took a removal from stimulating situations for new neurons to grow. It can be similarly concluded that humans need time away from devices, including enjoyable stimulation like games, to process things they have learned.

There are many different ways to get that non-stimulated time… lying in bed, meditating, going for a run (perhaps without that iPod?) or, even better, weaving! I always knew it was good for you. Just a few minutes a day in front of your loom (or, yes, most art projects) gives you just a little more time without technology a without (often fruitless) multitasking. Which, it seems, isn’t doing our brains much good.

The moral is: You know weaving makes you feel good (if you don’t, I suggest a Mirrix Loom to help you change your mind) but it looks it’s good for you too. Take some time today away from the computer (yes, I know you’re there, you’re reading a blog) and sit somewhere nice and quiet with your loom and some beads or some yarn and just weave. You’ll be better for it. 

No comments: