Don’t you just hate it when you have a brilliant idea for a blog post and you type it all out and then the computer goes wonky on you and you lose all your hard work! I just did that. Yeah, I know we are supposed to save, but when we are in the zone and what we have to say is just flying out of our fingertips, it is easy to get caught up in the moment and forget that technology is just a tool and it is how we use it that determines its success rate. That being said …
A good friend of mine came in with the most recent copy of Newsweek and said they had an article that I must read. My friend handed me a magazine with a cover picture of a woman holding her head in her hands, with her eyes squeezed tightly shut, her mouth was wide open like in a scream, and the photo was shattered with the center point being the woman’s nose. Then these words were over-laid: iCRAZY, PANIC, DEPRESSION and PSYCHOSIS.
I must thank Tony Dokoupil for writing this great article and if you have not read it, you certainly should. There are some really good nuggets in there, some that my new friend Annie Murphy Paul would really enjoy. If you have not checked out her work, I would recommend it to you as well. But I digress. Tony’s article talks about how we have become cyborgs, because of this continuous life of connection that we lead, which seems normal. Just because it seems normal does not mean that it is healthy or sustainable or for that matter that we know what the repercussions will be. However, when you dive into the article it will reveal some very compelling research – research about the implications. The cultural phenomena of smart phones plays a major role. Do a little research and you will be amazed.
If you are a regular reader then you know that my family plugs in every day at the office. But on our time we LOVE to be outside. We have as much outdoor living space as we do indoor. We LOVE to go camping, sit by a fire, hike, mountain bike, four wheel, paddle and since my husband is a swimming pool man, we have one of those and spend as much time in the water as possible. Additionally, I am addicted to gardening. I love plants and to be surround by living breathing life. I hate concrete, city noise, traffic and the general idea of too many people being crammed into a small space. Check out my Facebook page and you will see photo after photo of plants and flowers; they are like my children.
We do not have cable.
That is right; I said my household does not have cable. Our provider came out and buried our lines so that we could have a secure internet line that could not be chewed in half by squirrels or blown down in a storm and as soon as they buried our lines we canceled our cable. The customer support person that was helping us told us that we could not do that!
Well we did. We rent family movies and we watch Netflix and YouTube videos and play video games from time-to-time. But we value our family time and do not need cable for that.
I have to give credit where credit is due and thank my mother Tina for instilling these values in me. We have always utilized technology and had the latest gadgets, but those gadgets had their time and place. They like everything in life must be used in moderation, because after all life is all about the people we share our lives with and finding balance.
Thank you Mom!
Additionally, our friends and family know that it does not do any good to call or text us in the afternoons or on the weekends. You can leave a message and we will get back to you, but if you want to see us or to talk to us, you had better come knock on our door. When we do not have to be plugged in, we are not. We value authentic connection with those we care about and genuinely feel that the best way to do that is with face-to-face in-the-moment communication.
So are you addicted to the internet? Find out here. Then come back and share you score. I scored 30. How about you?