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Book Reviews

Digital Minimalism

Cal Newport’s “Digital Minimalism” isn’t a Christian book, but it could be just what you need to simplify your life.

Newport, a computer science professor at Georgetown, has become something of authority on establishing healthy limits in the use of technology. His latest book, subtitled “Choosing a Focused Life in a Noisy World,” is a thoughtful and practical guide to being more intentional in the way you use digital devices.

Newport defines digital minimalism this way: “A philosophy of technology use in which you focus your online time on a small number of carefully selected and optimized activities that strongly support things you value, and then happily miss out on everything else.”

Social media like Facebook and Instagram emphasize connections between people, but they can limit the solitude and reflection that are an important part of the Christian life.

“Simply put, humans are not wired to be constantly wired,” Newport writes.

They are wired to be social, but they are designed for a different kind of social interaction—“rich, face-to-face encounters,” as Newport puts it.

In other words, God designed you for relationships, but not a relationship with your smartphone. If need be, “Digital Minimalism” can help you get your priorities in order.