I’ve been thinking a lot about technology and the nearly constant chatter around me about how it’s taking over our lives.

“How can we control it?!”

Truth is, I’ve never been bothered by technology. I’ve literally never thought it was scary or taking too much personal information from me. When my friends came on and off Facebook every time they read a new update, I stayed on. I like smart technology. I remember the first time my smartphone asked me if I wanted directions to a place I’d googled on my computer moments before. I was, quite frankly, thrilled. For me, it really is like having an assistant.

So I keep that concept in mind when I use my technology. I learn about each app I download. I consider how it can best be used by me. What’s its impact? Is it worth incorporating into my stash of phone apps that I’ve come to rely on?

But let’s get back to fear. Fear starts a chain reaction in the brain. It’s a super fast reaction that is automatic and happens within fractions of a second. Your feeling and memories of this feeling stay with you long after the initial fear event. That’s unfortunate because if your fear isn’t based in truth, your fear alarm becomes oversensitive.

Technology isn’t going away. It isn’t a new fad and there are amazing ways that technology will change the course of our humanity. But, they aren’t scary or bad. if you don’t make an effort to understand how the technology works, you won’t be able to use it to your advantage.

When we teach children how to harness the power of technology, we give them control. We help them steer it until they can take the reins.

Last night my son told me he had to wake up at different times each day depending on if he had show choir or not. He also told me that he hates the way he feels when an alarm wakes him up. “It’s too loud and it makes me jump.” I showed him how to set up the bedtime feature on his iPad. We entered in the times he needs to wake and I showed him the new more soothing alarm sounds that gradually become louder if don’t respond. As we were setting it up, he said, “Hey, I should tell this to remind me to do IXL (his math) and DuoLingo (his Spanish)!” These are two regularly assigned computer tasks he typically forgets. So we went into the calendar and set up reminders.

Be not afraid, so that you can be in control.