Now I'm not at all saying advancing is bad. Advances in medicine are amazing! I love my washing machine, too! I don't see me parting with that anytime soon! :-) Yet, I look around at parents and children alike on devices. I do believe that there can be too much of a good thing. I also feel we need to step back and evaluate what these things are really adding to our lives.....as well as what they are taking away.
I tell you all of this not to be accusational, as I am as guilty as any. Rather, I tell you because I have decided to regress. I'm not going Amish or anything, but I'm taking small steps to make a big impact. First, I DELETED my Facebook account. Deactivated? No....deleted. It is the most freeing feeling. I was always getting frustrated with things on there or people. I sat on there wasting time reading about other peoples lives. To stay in touch with people now I have an email address, and a phone. When people think about deleting their account they get a sting of panic. How will I keep in touch with these 649 people? What about posting pictures for relatives? What about being encouraging to people who are down? Well, honestly, I don't want to keep in touch with all those people. I mean do we need to be in touch with our high school classmates -x girlfriends -cousins-mom? Um no. I really think our society has become addicted to it or dependent on it. For family, I keep in touch the old fashioned way. The vast majority of your "friends" on FB, really don't care what you have to say about what you are eating or how you slept, or that headache you've got, or the new diet you are trying.
Our world is becoming more and more detached from those directly around us. How many of us actually know our neighbors? I think we could do so much more good if we paid attention to our direct environment.
It was hard at first. I'd look outside and want to post something witty about how much I hate the snow. I wanted the little bit of attention it would get. I wanted to know how many likes I would get. Admit it, we all want to get those "likes". We want to post a pic of us posed just so, and hope someone will compliment it. We've all done it. I know some of you are thinking, that you can use Facebook to encourage too. I agree, you can, to a degree. But from someone who suffers from depression, and would post about being sad or down....it doesn't really help. What does help? My friends that are physically here. God will guide us to the right people, and he doesn't need Facebook to do it. There are plenty of people hurting around us that we just need to find.
For me leaving Facebook has helped me to deal with my complaints instead of putting them out there for people to fuel my fire. It has helped me to actually call people to see how they are doing. It has been amazing. I feel like instead of having hundreds of "friends", I'm actually building relationships.
I don't expect you to read this and delete your account. I would be happy if people just stepped back and became aware of what is around them more.
I am also considering going back to a flip phone. My smart phone can be helpful, but I need to exersize more restraint and not pull it out every 5 min. Speaking of phones....think you aren't addicted to your phone? Try going 12 hours without it. Try leaving it home while you go out for the day. Studies have shown that we have built a phsycological dependency on our devices and we can actuall display some withdrawal symptoms when our devices are with held from us. It's funny, because I sit here and get a panicked feeling if I think about not having a cell phone at all. How would I get directions? How would I get help if I broke down? Well, both cases are pretty rare, but what did we do BEFORE cell phones? We managed.
Like I said I'm not being accusational, as I'm guilty. Try remembering life pre tech, go without for a day. It might help you see something new. It's just my thoughts, and nobody gave me a penny for them.