Without technology, I would not know my friend Elle in Germany spent the last two weeks in Ireland visiting some family of hers. I would have to wait for my favorite band to come to town in order to listen to their best song. Also, two nights ago I ordered a bunch of stuff off the clearance section on American Eagle’s website because I got a 60% off all clearance notification in my email. $40 later, I realize how imperative technology is required in today’s culture. The question remains, is there an equilibrium price between casualties of relationships and productivity in tasks accomplished?
My mother knows that I’m so tapped into the Internet, that if I don’t answer via text message, she can reach me in many other methods. (If you’re reading this, mom yes I will call you this weekend.)
Forever “on” is a struggle, especially for me, someone who forgets their phone a lot. I wasn’t always that way though. I was that one teenager who would be mad when my parents took my phone away to “ground” me. What changed my view you may ask? Good question. It really boils down to two things. The first, I became a lover of communication, through expressions. Meaning can be a detriment to any relationship when distractions and noise get in the way.
According to The Huffington Post article 21st Century Break Ups states that because people are always on their phone, they don’t get adequate time alone to mend properly from a break up. Instead social media encourages the “who got over who faster” game. What good is that, when the right thing to do is take a break? Take a break is a simple phrase. Easier said than done, especially since when I’m writing this exact sentence I’m getting a notification on my phone that I have a blog post due on September 10th. How do we really take a break?
Move to a foreign country with limited Wi-Fi for a while. Two and a half months in my case. Guaranteed, it will stretch your mind and imagination. Surprisingly, I learned more about myself and who I was by only checking my social media once a week. Ironic when social media’s entire focus is revolved around each individual person. You think having a bunch of profiles with stuff I like and dislike would be more of a give away of who I am. Quite the opposite in fact.
I’m not the only one who has gone on a fast like this. Many people do. Steve Corona, the previous CTO at Twitpic tried a whole month without social media. Little did he know, he started filling the time he had previously used up with tweeting into a time for meditation, or competing in events. Corona ended up writing a book in his spare time too. Our culture says we don’t have enough time, the real reason we think we don’t have enough time is because we can’t manage it well. Multitasking takes twice as long because each task is completed with half the effort.
After stepping off that plane onto American soil again, I realized how much of a casualty it is, to always be connected to social media. You can miss a moment in the real world that you’ll never get back. Or you’ll never be able to be alone with your own thoughts, and really think about what God has planned for your life. The equilibrium price between casualties in relationships, and productivity in tasks completed, boils down to how it is communicated across the board. A good rule of thumb though, if someone is talking to you, put your phone down and listen. Life keeps moving, even if you are stopping to check your snapchat.
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