Kathy’s Blog: Are You Controlled By Technology?

up close and personal series, up close and personal with kathy romero, kathy romero, head of global planning and concierge services, up close and personal

Dear Readers:

As a planner, I am always on the move: talking to clients, connecting with my team and working closely with Preston to help execute the dreams of our clients.  As a mother, I don’t want to miss a single thought, feeling or moment my children want to share or need support through, and as a wife, I want to be a source of support, love and laughter to my husband.  Hence, my iPhone is always with me.  It is both a great support, but it can also be a devious distraction.

In this age of technology, we all have access to some fabulous gadgets. But what happens when those wonderful inventions become intrusions? I was hit hard by this realization when my  son called me out and said, “Mom, you are always on your phone and are always distracted”.

This didn’t sit well with me, so I decided to work on changing it.

I don’t think many of us are aware of how much time we devote to our cell phones, iPhones, Blackberries and other gadgets. They not only suck up our own time, but I don’t think many of us understand the impact they have on those around us. Being present is not always easy (especially when you’re a busy professional working with clients and trying to balance a family, social life and time for yourself) but it’s an essential component in getting the job done and the life serene. I’ve yet to master this fully, but I know it’s not impossible.

Here are a few ways I am learning to balance it out:

I now try and answer all of my pressing emails before meetings with my clients.

When I am having dinner with my family, on a date with my husband, at my son’s baseball game or tucking my daughter into bed, I put my phone in my purse or turn it off and leave it in the other room.

I prepare my clients by letting them know that I will be taking notes on my computer at the beginning of a meeting so they know I am present and not being rude.

When I have to email or text someone, I will excuse myself from meetings briefly so as not to distract or offend anyone.

Those of us in the service industry tend to like to please our clients, but we also work with some who don’t understand our need to disconnect from them in order to service other clients or be there for our families and friends.  The truth is that when we choose to be in the moment, we are more efficient and build closer relationships because of it and everyone around us including ourselves will lead a much happier life.

Do you feel you have trouble disconnecting?  How are you working to be present?

With a Happy Heart,


Kathy Romero is the CEO and The Head of Global Wedding Planning for Preston Bailey Designs. She shares her thoughts and advice on Preston’s Blog every other Thursday.

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