UNITED STATES—Lately it seems as though most people that I encounter all have this need to re-kindle any kind of connection via social media. I realize that this trend is nothing new, being that social networking has been around for years and years, not to mention that it rekindles long lost relationships. However, such trends have me wondering, where do we draw the line where we accept true, intimate friendships, without the need to compare or be “liked” all the time?
Meetings are on Google Hangout, chats on Facebook and work-related topics can be discussed via emails. Don’t get me wrong, I sort of like the convenience of this mode of communication, however, my phone looks like a light show, at times with all the pings, notifications, alerts and messaging sent back and forth. Sometimes, I truly just crave an intimate setting or simply to just enjoy the quiet.
The act of unplugging seems like a paradox in today’s plugged-in world. To unplug is to disconnect from an obstacle or blockage. However, the true unplugging seems to be from each other instead. Disconnection is at an all-time high, especially since technology is supposed to connect us. However, we are at the forefront of technology and the more of it we acquire, the less time we make for one another.
The benefits of not being available online has its uses, as well. For one, it proves to the world as well as yourself, that there is a life outside the computer screen. Not having to post your day to day musings makes life seem that much more sacred and beautiful rather than putting every single thing on display for “likes.”
Not having to check for texts or emails means a more productive day, which means getting things done. When you’re not checking your phone, you actually look at the world around you. You may even see things you’ve never noticed before.
One may even take notice that quality time spent is more special, and your life is fantastic even without the addition of social media. Rather than speeding through a text, oblivious to what and who is right in front of you.
Lastly, finding the right balance will help you to really understand how dependent you may really be, on technology. Finding time to think, reflect and work out problems in your own mind rather than inundating your brain with tons of information, helps to gain a sense of focus and balance.
Technology is great. We’ve come a long way since the first computer and as we head even farther into the future, why not take a break once in a while? You’ve only got one life, might as well stop and smell the roses.