Image Credit: Adam S., Kingdom City, MO
What is the first thing you do when YOU wake up? Start your daily routine? Pray? Check your social media on your phone? Relax?
Well, for many of us the first action we take is to check our phones. It’s as if we are mentally and physically connected our phones if we don’t check them we feel incomplete or possibly not even normal! But when did this start? When did we start to feel unattached from the world without our phones? Don’t get me wrong technology and social media has its benefits but why does it have such a hold on us?! Instead of using our minds we rely on technology to do everything for us, we’ve made so many things in our lives unnatural through the use of technology; things become staged instead of a natural moment.
For example, In the past when your friends lived around your area, getting up to the craziest of things on your bikes, by foot; you didn’t have to compare how much you're having to others by checking snap chat stories. Another example; going on dates with the person you have feelings for and not stressing to take the best picture on Instagram, so everyone can comment ‘Couple goals’ or even meeting people in person although social media can expand your social life for the better, but it can be unsafe and sometimes you don’t really know someone properly until you're with them in person. Also meeting people in first, you can discuss first impressions before knowing anything about them, but through social media you’ve already talked before meeting the person and probably know details about the person before you’ve actually talked to them by checking their profile; also the person could create another personality or appearance behind the screen. Before ‘Instagram famous stars’ you didn’t have to worry about following ‘The Instagram look’ there were so many unique trends, different hairstyles, different ways to style your gel, various choice of how to dress, random colours etc.
I love technology, It’s a good form of entertainment it can make a lot of things easier but, we need to gain control once again and not let technology/social media control our lives, minds, and happiness.
We have all heard it, how technology has taken over the world and left us as zombies. We are shells of who we may have been, because instead of looking around and experiencing life we are dependent upon a lit up screen. We have all heard this, but what does this dependency really mean for our future?
We are lacking socialization; instead of talking to and spending time with other people, we are getting all our information from the Internet. The Internet is an amazing resource, but there are some things it cannot teach or give you. It cannot teach you the value of spending time with friends and family, or how to live life to the fullest by being present in the current moment. You never know just how many opportunities and experiences pass you by because you are looking down at your screen. When you are 90, you aren’t going to look back fondly at the countless hours you spent watching cat videos.
With technology being such an integral part of our lives now, no one is spared, not even babies. They are given iPhones/tablets to grab and play with instead of toys. Instead of being sent outside to play, children are given iPads to watch videos or are playing video games. Each generation is becoming more and more dependent, and no longer sustain skills that were once deemed necessary. Many middle school kids no longer know how to write or read cursive or how to set up a written letter. Their attention spans are getting briefer and more sporadic, unable to be attentive to a teacher for long spans of time. If the homework is not on the computer, how do they do it? Gradually this will carry on into the work world, and once-simple tasks will become a chore.
We now live in a world where it is possible to talk instantly with someone on the other end of the Earth. This instant communication is convenient and helpful, however it creates a reality where the conversation never really ends. Countless texts are sent back and forth 24/7, and conversations lose their meaning. People run out of things to say and become redundant. Relationships become even harder, because even couples need time away from each other. Technology makes this difficult to do because, even if we are not currently talking with the other person, it is not hard to go on social media and see every detail of what the other is doing. We post our entire lives online, and yet still expect the significant other to have something new to say at the end of the day.
Talking to someone on the phone or face to face has become harder. We are so used to speaking in messages to people behind a screen that we cannot see that talking in real time to someone right in front of us becomes nerve racking. We have lost social skills, manners, and expect everything to be delivered to us as fast as the Internet does.
We are constantly distracted. We try to multitask at all times, having conversations with people while looking down at our phones, writing emails while in a lecture, and even texting and driving. It has gotten to the point where our multitasking is dangerous. Just because we can multitask, or think we can, does not mean that we should. Take the time to fully immerse yourself in the moment and listen to your friend when they talk to you, give the teacher your full attention, and perhaps most importantly, pay attention to the road. When we multitask we are not fully engaging with what is going on around us, and so we are not doing the best job that we could.
We are all so distracted by our phones that we have not fully noticed the zombie apocalypse that is happening right in front of us. Technology is a beautiful thing, but if we cannot learn how to use it responsibly and in moderation, our future may not be as bright as the screens we are holding.