This means you will set aside a certain period to interact with absolutely no technology. This might be a full day, a weekend, or a week. For many people, this kind of detox will be difficult; for other people, it sounds downright impossible. But it's not only possible; it is also a positive step toward emotional health. Expect plenty of agitation and restlessness. As said earlier, setting aside your devices often causes a sense of withdrawal, akin to drug withdrawal symptoms. Don't dismiss how difficult a digital detox can be--but also how liberating it can be. Curtail social media engagement. Checking Facebook, Instagram, and other sites every other day (or less frequently) should suffice. It's wonderful to keep up with the activities of friends and family members, but let's be honest--most posts and notifications could be skipped without missing anything important. Also, be aware of "friends" who put forth a perfect, polished online presence. You don't need to view posts that cause you to feel envious or inferior. Think of a passion of yours. This could be something that you love to do as a hobby, or it could even be your career. Make a list of everything you love about it. Let's say you love to stay active with different forms of exercise: CrossFit, yoga, hiking, rock climbing, and weight lifting/resistance training. Make a list of everything you love about that hobby of yours. It could be that you love how it makes you feel while doing it, or you love the payoff (a fit body that rocks!), improved body confidence, a great activity to do with friends, etc. Stare at that list every day, if only for a minute. Post it on your bathroom mirror, and soak it in.

These are the things that will make you unique, which will increase your confidence, which will improve your credibility factor, which will get you WELL LIKED. I'm not a fan of violence, so my advice wasn't to lash out, and stand up for himself by means of fighting. However, I do think it's important to have a strong backbone, and a strong backbone means you have boundaries that no one crosses, ever. Apply the reverse doormat technique, and you'll be able to send out a nonverbal, highly effective message to people everywhere--you're not to be messed with, but respected; you're not a victim, but a survivor. Now, this technique is so easy to do, it really doesn't matter what your age is or confidence level may be. My friend's son was able to use it despite the extreme stress he was under from his bully--and in my experience, if he can effectively pull this off, any adult can. Let me first explain what happened prior to him using this technique, so that you have a reference for using it in your own life. 24 hours before he used this technique, he came to his mom and I about a bully named Steven. Steven was bigger, louder and rough. Naturally, he found someone (my friend's son) who was physically smaller and emotionally softer than he to pick on. This guy went up to my friend' son and said, "Tomorrow in the playground after school. Let's see in front of everyone who's stronger when I beat you down." This kid was in the sixth grade classroom, and known for picking on someone new every other week. Unfortunately, my friend's son was this week's target. Telling his mom and I what happened, he was sobbing, petrified that the next day, he would get beaten up by the most feared kid in school. This is what I told him to do: "This bully is desperate for some kindness in his life. But, he also needs to know that you aren't going to accept his tempting offer to fight him tomorrow. So, I'm going to teach you how to walk and talk like you mean business - without ever having to come close to actually fighting him--because what I'll teach you will nip it in the bud so fast that he won't know what hit him." I taught my friend's son how to walk with his shoulders back. I gave him a tip for reducing the nervousness, and I told him how to speak with confidence, using sales close the deal' statements so that bully would have NO CHOICE but to accept what he said. <a href=''>And,</a> I taught him how to swap hisoffer' of a fight for another offer. It worked.

My friend's son walked right up to him the next day, as soon as the bell for recess began. His shoulders were back, his smile was on, and before the bully could say or do anything intimidating, my friend's son said the following: "Hey, I heard you wanted to see that new Superman movie that came out. Thought you might want to go, I bought an extra ticket, so you could have it if you want it." As far as I was concerned, forty-five minutes was fine with me, as it left plenty of time for other activities. "How do you plan to make sure you don't watch for more than forty-five minutes per day?" I asked. Not wanting to lose the negotiation that she clearly felt she was winning, she proposed using a kitchen timer she could set herself. "Sounds good," I agreed. "But if Mommy and Daddy notice you're not able to keep the promise you made to yourself and to us, we'll have to revisit this discussion," I said, and she agreed. This is an example of how even young children can learn to use a precommitment. Today, as a spirited ten-year-old, my daughter is still in charge of her screen time. She's made some adjustments to her self-imposed guidelines as she's grown, such as trading daily episodes for a weekend movie night. She's also replaced the kitchen timer with other tools; she now calls out to Amazon's Alexa to set a timer to let her know when she's reached her limit. The important thing is that these are her rules, not ours, and that she's in charge of enforcing them. Best of all, when her time is up, it's not her dad who has to be the bad guy; it's her device telling her she's had enough. Without realizing it, she entered into an effort pact, as described in part four. Many parents want to know if there is a correct amount of time kids should be allowed to spend on their screens, but no such absolute number exists. There are too many factors at play, including the child's specific needs, what the child is doing online, and the activities that screen time is replacing. The most important thing is to involve the child in the conversation and help them set their own rules. When parents impose limits without their kids' input, they are setting them up to be resentful and incentivizing them to cheat the system. It's only when kids can monitor their own behavior that they learn the skills they need to be indistractable--even when their parents aren't around. These strategies are no guarantee of parent-child domestic harmony.

In fact, we should expect to have heated discussions about the role technology plays in our homes and in our kids' lives, just as many families have fiery debates over giving the car keys to their teens on a Saturday night. Discussions and, at times, respectful disagreements are a sign of a healthy family. If there is one lesson to take away from this section, and perhaps this entire book, it's that distraction is a problem like any other. Whether in a large corporation or in a small family, when we discuss our problems openly and in an environment where we feel safe and supported, we can resolve them together. One thing is for certain: technology is becoming more pervasive and persuasive. While it's important our kids are aware that products are designed to be highly engaging, we also need to reinforce their belief in their own power to overcome distraction. It's their responsibility, as well as their right, to use their time wisely. Your local community is deciding whether to increase the funding for its school system. As expected, the debate on whether additional spending will result in better student performance heats up. Some people point to evidence indicating that teacher salary and class size are related to educational quality.26 Other people, however, with a different agenda point to studies that say there's little or no relationship between educational expenditures and students' performance on the scholastic aptitude test (SAT), a general achievement measure. So what should we believe? Does more money lead to better student performance or not? To make a more informed decision, we have to determine if there's a selection bias in the data analyzed. That is, we need to determine if the correlations are based on all the relevant data that should be considered, or if they are calculated on only a small sample of the data, specifically selected to bolster one's argument.27 Those who are against spending argue that when studies analyze data across the fifty states, there is little or no relation between spending and performance. In fact, they point out that if a study finds an association, it's often in the opposite direction, suggesting that higher spending actually leads to lower performance. What evidence do they have for this conclusion? A number of states with high teacher salaries actually have low average SAT scores, while other states with low salaries have high SATs. For example, students in Mississippi have higher SAT scores than students in California (by over one hundred points, on average). Given that Mississippi pays its teachers the lowest salaries in the nation, it seems pretty compelling that spending more will not increase student performance. In fact, some may argue that we should even cut teacher salaries!

But are schools really better in Mississippi than in California? Other measures show that California schools are superior, so why do we have lower SAT scores in California?28 The answer is that the SAT is not taken by every high school student. Some state university systems do not require the SAT, they use the American College Testing (ACT) program. Thus, only students who plan on attending college out-of-state take the SATs, and those students are likely to have higher academic achievement than the average student in the state. In addition, states with better educational systems typically have more students who want to go to college, so a greater proportion of students take the SAT, resulting in more students with average abilities sitting for the exam. In fact, a close examination reveals that only about 4 percent of high school students in Mississippi take the SAT, while 47 percent of students in California take the test.29 And so, there is selection bias in the data analyzed. The 4 percent from Mississippi represent the cream of the crop, and comparing those students to a much larger proportion of students from California is like comparing apples and oranges. The bottom line is, if we don't critically analyze the data used to calculate a correlation, we can be misled into believing something that's not actually the case. This is especially true if we have a preconceived personal or political bias. For example, one conservative commentator fell into this trap when he argued against expenditures on education, citing the research indicating that greater spending does not lead to higher SAT scores. However, the states that he pointed to as having high scores--Iowa, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, and Minnesota--had SAT participation rates of only 5 percent, 6 percent, 7 percent, 4 percent, and 10 percent, respectively. These numbers are quite low given that about 40 percent of all high school seniors take the SAT in the United States. He used New Jersey as an example of low SAT scores and high educational expenditures, but 76 percent of high school seniors take the SAT in New Jersey.30 So what is the relation between spending and academic achievement? It turns out that when the proportion of students taking the test is considered in the analysis, states that spend more on education actually have higher scores. It's estimated that spending an additional $1,000 per pupil would yield a fifteen point increase in the average SAT score for a state. Earlier in your practice you had inhaling and exhaling as objects of meditation. Now you have the sign as the third object of meditation. When you focus your mind on this third object, your mind reaches a stage of concentration sufficient for your practice of insight meditation. This sign is strongly present at the rims of the nostrils. Master it and gain full control of it so that whenever you want, it should be available.