Insourcing: Why I Question Fitbits, Smart Watches, and Even Smart Phones

Insourcing: Why I Question Fitbits, Smart Watches, and Even Smart Phones

a line of people dresed in blue consulting their smart phones

I question fitbits, smart watches, and even smart phones. Find out why and what it has to do with insourcing wisdom. Photo by camilo jimenez on Unsplash.

Fitbits, Smart Watches, and Even Smart Phones

What do they all have in common? If you’re of a certain age, it’s obvious. If you’re younger, maybe not so much. The connection is what I call “outsourcing.” They all outsource something we used to do for ourselves. I’ll explore what that is in this post.

All Tools are Technology

A pencil is technology. So is a match. Anything that extends what comes with the human package is a tool. A tool is technology. There’s no difference, despite our modern usage of “tech.” We think we invented it–but we didn’t. Ancient humans did. Anything a human uses to help us survive and thrive is tech, is a tool.

Tools are Treasure

We humans treasure our tools. Rightly so: without tools, we could not cook, hunt, gather, do a lot of the work we do–to say nothing of the work humans have done for millennia. Without tools, we can, however:  sing, worship, make love, walk, think, eat, and excrete.

But I swear we are forgetting we can do anything without a tool. It’s like we could not poop if we didn’t have a smartbutt. (I’m not naturally a very funny person, so that’s my best wit you’ve got right there.)

And yes, of course, I realize there are a zillion tools I’m using right now that permit me to talk with you about all this. But the primary tool I am using is my mind.

Mind Is Our Greatest Treasure

Our greatest treasure is not a tool. It comes with the human package. It’s our minds-which includes our hearts in my book.

So when we use tools, we should question their impact on our greatest treasure: our minds.

Why I Question Fitbits, Smart Watches, and Even Smart Phones

Fitbits, smart watches, and smart phones all impact our minds. We are trained to believe that like most tools, they extend our natural capacities–the human “package,” as I put it earlier. So you may believe they extend your mind. But I question whether they do that. I think they limit our minds.

Using them trains us to become dependent on them, so they are both mind-limiting and dependency-inducing. (Dependency is another form of limitation.)

Fitbits, smart watches, and smart phones are a way to outsource your mind. They make users feel smarter by making us duller and more dependent.

This is why I question “smart” devices of every kind. I personally use none of them. (My cellphone is a flip-phone.) I use a pen-and-paper datebook and whiteout tape. When I need to remember something, I write it down.

Again, even a pencil is technology. It’s not that I don’t use tech; I am simply choosing my tech. Tech that builds up rather than tears down my mind. I treasure my mind. For example, to write something down in my datebook, I have to cultivate the impulse to do so.

Cultivating the correct impulses in my mind (and heart) are how I choose to live. I invite you to question whether you want to do this, if you already do it, and how you do it.

I call this “insourcing.”

Outsourcing May Make You Smart But Insourcing Makes You Wise

Your smart devices may be making you stupider. Giving them up may be wise, and make you feel foolish. That’s all up to you. But this blog is for people seeking the wisdom path to abundance. Abundance with wisdom. Increased abundance through increasing wisdom.

Insource your needs; meet them yourself by building and training your mind. Mindfulness helps. Self-observation helps. Where do you need reminders? Create them. Use weird mnemonic devices like leaving things in an odd place you will see them to help you remember things. Write things down. Train yourself to ask: what have I forgotten? Where’s my list? Where is my mind?

Where is my mind?

This is the bottomline question. Who owns your mind? Right now, whatever devices you are in relationship with have at least co-ownership of your mind. Consider reducing their share of your mind and the real estate they take up. Reclaim some of it by deliberately insourcing at least some of what you currently use devices to do. I guarantee the results will make you richer, long-term.

Want my help? It will take a very short time for us to help you reclaim your own mind and become the master of your devices. Two to four half-hour sessions will do it. Contact me here and describe what relationship with your tools will make you happy.


  • Jennifer Kahly
    Posted at 10:46h, 13 July Reply

    Beth, this is one of my favorite blogs ever! Yes, I went back to my written calendar after feeling my brain change after every time I had to grab my device to consult my calendar. I really love my relationship with my calendar. It is a two-page per day daytimer. So in advance I can collect things I will or probably will do that day. As necessity dictates I can begin to feel how a particular month or week is evolving (make changes, close it to extra activities). Then as the day approaches on the other side is an hourly breakdown. This gives me the opportunity to plan the flow of the day using that activity list on the other side. I’m also going to out you, I’ve seen your calendar. It is tiny. You should share why!!

    • Beth
      Posted at 15:41h, 13 July Reply

      J, I am so pleased to be outed! I have lots of reasons for a small calendar. For one thing, I’m a minimalist and it suits my tiny bag I carry. Is there another brilliant reason I use a tiny calendar?
      *Your comment is inspiring, and wonderfully helpful to our readers.*

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