An obsession I have had for well over a decade is my collection of electronic devices. I call them my toys and my toy store is Best Buy. If most people shared this obsession, Best Buy profits would hit the roof. Unlike Sears or JCPenny, they’d be opening stores instead of closing some store shutters.
When Uncle Sam’s tax refund recently arrived, I had an excuse to go to my toy store and buy what I had my eyes on and researched for weeks on the web: the Samsung GS-3 smart watch. I was so excited when I brought it home! Since it was a watch, this was one gadget I could keep with me around the clock. I’m not a kid at heart. No, I’m an “overboard” kid at heart.
The application (app) that perhaps is one of the most popular is the health one. It displays a daily record of the steps I take. I didn’t ask it to but it set a goal of 6000 steps per day. When I bought it, I didn’t think the number of steps I took each day would matter to me at all. I forgot to consider the effect it might have on my constant companion – autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Since it is hard for me to sit still, another common ASD trait, I don’t struggle as much as perhaps other people in meeting that goal. If during the week I am working a school P.E. substitute assignment, I don’t have to worry about hitting 6000. But if it is more of a sit-down assignment of watching and working with youngsters in the classroom, I’ll have to step up to the plate before or after school to make up for lost time.
My “smart watch” is sometimes too smart for my liking. If I have been sitting for an hour or so, it will vibrate displaying a message: “NEED TO MOVE” with a shoe icon underneath. I may be at a place and time where I can’t do that, but if I can without breaking any social rules, I better get off my rear or my ASD guilt complex will kick in.
This isn’t a bad obsession as far as I can tell. Exercise is good for my body and mind. It is one of my best ways of avoiding or coping with ASD meltdowns. It’s a rare day so far that my watch does not vibrate displaying the rewarding message of 6000 steps reached. The positive feedback from my know-it-all watch motivates me to step up to the challenge of 6000+.
It has been a couple of weeks since my GS-3 has been tied to my wrist (except when I have to give it juice for recharging). I am going overboard but nothing new about my tendency to do that. I am jogging in place after I get up in the morning which is something I didn’t even think of doing pre-GS-3. I even run in place while I’m waiting for the microwave to go off. I now rack up around 13,000 steps per day.
I don’t dare change the default from 6000. If I double that in a day’s time, that’s great. But my motivation of reaching at least 6000 isn’t just desire or exercise. My ASD won’t give me a break unless I walk 6000 steps by bedtime! HA!