Two intrepid librarians

Two intrepid librarians review the best nonfiction books for children

Monday, April 11, 2022

Attention Hijacked by Erica B. Marcus


Attention Hijacked: Using Mindfulness to Reclaim Your Brain from Tech

by Erica B. Marcus

Zest Books, an imprint of Lerner Publishing Group, Inc. 2022

Have you ever spend an entire day binging on the latest streaming series? Found yourself spending hours scrolling through social media posts? Walked into a library and notice the students hanging out were staring at their smartphones instead of talking or reading books? The struggle is finding a balance with our digital usage.

In, Attention Hijacked, Marcus, who has taught mindfulness for over 15 years, offers readers, both teens and adults, a roadmap for deciding how technology influences their lives. Marcus states that taking control of her digital use, “was the beginning of a long process of really waking up to how my technology use was impacting me.”

Marcus does not advocate we stop using technology altogether. Instead, she uses mindfulness to help kids find a healthy balance with technology use. Peppered throughout the text are examples from individuals, mostly her students, who use technology in a positive way (think YouTube) to learn how to do something, like landing a kickflip on a skateboard. The text is very nonjudgemental as Moran encourages readers to take a close examination of their tech habits to see if there is a way to balance the positive aspects of technology amidst the endless distractions it offers. 

What Marcus does well is place the mindful practices into the bigger picture of why we are so addicted to technology. (Chapter 2: How Tech Companies Hijack Our Attention) With all the mental stimulation one receives from scrolling, Marcus offers exercises to encourage readers to slow down and enjoy the simple pleasures of daily activities.  

Marcus’ approach is nonjudgemental and supportive. A perfect book to hand to anyone, from parents, librarians, teachers, students, who are searching for a healthier tech habit or would like to use some of these practices in a program.

To learn more about Erica B. Marcus and her mindfulness approach, click here. 

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