One evening while watching a show on Disney Channel with my nieces, I noticed something odd. One of the young girls on the show turned down going out with her family in order to update her profile picture and status on a social media website using her brand new tablet.
Now the last time I checked, one of the most important things in life was being with family and friends. Yet television shows and other sources of media are saying that having the most likes on your statuses or owning the latest and greatest gadgets is whats important in life. This idea is fueling our societys addiction to technology, as well as contributing to a rising disconnection from others.
If you have taken a shuttle somewhere, stood in a line, or waited for a class to start, youve seen this disconnect in action. The majority of people in these scenarios are connected to some form of technology whether it be a cell phone or tablet. Theyre usually checking their Facebook page, replying to emails, listening to online radio or playing a game. Within their own worlds, they feel busy and connected but to the people around them, theyre a silent and anonymous face in the crowd.
What is this phenomenon all about? Why would we rather be plugged in to some electronic device than to the real world? There is a broad world beyond technology and were just letting it pass us by.
Have you considered what could happen if you put all of the tablets and smartphones away for a day, a weekend or even a month? Imagine how much you can get done. You could finish a vast majority, if not all, of your homework, hang out with roommates and friends, go grocery shopping and do the laundry more efficiently than if you were trying to do all of that while plugged in.
Not only would your actions become more efficient but your relationships could improve as well. Online socializing does not have nearly the same impact on a friendship that face-to-face contact does, and in the long run, it is a much healthier form of communication. This is not to say that online communication is completely a bad thing especially with people who live multiple hours or states away. But when it comes to those in close proximity, online communication should not be our go-to or primary method of contact.
This phenomenon has started to break us away from each other and has sucked us into the digital world, but the good news is that it can be reversed. Spend some time outside, with friends and family or even your dog. Disconnect from all of the hustle and bustle and experience life as it was before all of this technology. Back when you talked and enjoyed being with your family, when you barbequed and relaxed by the pool or lake or go enjoy the natural beauty that your town has to offer.
You might find that its a lot easier and more enjoyable if your just disconnect from the digital world and plug into real life.