We use it for texting. Calling. Emailing. Checking social media. Entertainment. Paying bills. Ordering groceries.
There’s a virtual umbilical cord connecting most people and their electronic devices. Whether it’s a cell phone, tablet or laptop, can you say that you’ve gone a single day without touching either one? Even for just a few minutes? Unlikely.
Society has become so dependent on technology to perform everyday tasks that we’re slowly losing touch with reality. With some of the things that matter most in life. Here are a few reasons why everyone needs to unplug once in a while.
1. You Can Actually Talk to People (You Know, Face-to-Face)
Who talks anymore? I mean really talks? Sits down and has a conversation without rudely checking their phone between sentences. It’s not often that you’ll find people at lunch, sitting in the park or out to dinner without their phones visibly nearby. When we fail to interact with one another, our communication skills hit the shitter. We have a difficult time explaining ourselves or expressing our feelings, which can impact relationships, partnerships, and even potential job opportunities. Interviews aren’t done over text messaging. You can’t deliver a firm handshake or stellar first impression using Bitmjoi.
2. Reclaim Your Emotions
Not only is interpersonal interaction out the window but it’s borderline handicapping us from successfully identifying real emotion. How many people have broken up with a partner via email or text? It’s easy to hide behind a screen. Then you don’t have to see the impact that your words are having on the recipient. This can lead to some pretty negative behavior like cyber bullying. When we become keyboard warriors, we lack empathy for our words and actions. Nothing can replace or duplicate real intimacy or touch. Skin to skin contact. Eye contact. It’s all a part of building emotional connections with others. And it’s something that’s lost over a Wifi connection.
3. Less Missed Opportunity
When you become consumed with technology and living each day vicariously through your screen, social media or television, you’re not really living. You could be missing out on your next opportunity to meet someone amazing, score your dream job or watch your sister score the winning home run. Texting while driving is another growing epidemic. Society just can’t seem to put the phone down and pay attention.
Technology is so powerful these days that some people actually convince themselves that they’ve had an experience even though they’ve never left the comfort of their home. Virtual reality and augmented reality are awesome advances in technology but are they truly altering our reality in terms of having tangible, real-life experiences?
4. Start Appreciating Nature
When’s the last time you stepped outside and simply drank in the beauty and wonder of nature? The smells, the sounds, the sights. With our noses buried in our devices, we aren’t able to appreciate what’s around us. If you don’t trust yourself to ignore those alerts or notifications, leave your phone inside the house. Take a walk or a bike ride without it. Whatever messages you missed will be waiting for you when you return.
If you’re feeling especially daring or inclined to unplug from reality, take a mini-vaca to a picturesque location where you’re surrounded by nature instead of cell phone towers.
5. Become More Independent
All too often we become distracted and consumed with answering that work email or liking our friend’s post. There’s a certain sense of immediacy when it comes to answering text messages or updating your status. But why is that? Because we’ve become dependent on technology to satisfy us.
How many people have a difficult time spelling thanks to spell check? Who has lost valuable information, photographs, or other data due to an unexpected computer crash or that time you dropped your cell phone in the toilet? (It’s okay, we’ve all done it). Technology is great until it decides not to work. Technology basically has us by the balls. Our most precious information and memories are often housed on our phones SIM card. Sure, the cloud helps eliminate some of this worry over losing data but the risk still remains.
We’ve become dependent on our phones, computers, and the internet to answer all of life’s great questions. Google knows all. What happened to going out and finding the answer for yourself? The digital world makes everything so easy for us but it makes you wonder sometimes, is it too easy? Is it creating an incapable, needy, and dysfunctional society?