Balancing Technology

If most of you are like me, you are glued to technology in some sort of fashion. For me, my phone is all but attached to me. I use it for email, earning money, checking the weather, research, asking Google for directions, finding sales, etc.,. It’s become a way of life for me so when the internet goes out, it becomes a challenge for me to operate without my trusty companion. I think many of us have found ourselves out to dinner with friends or family and texted others or spent time that we should have used to focus on those around us, on our technology. We use the excuse that we need to stay up to date and many times that’s true. But what about the times that we could have done things differently?

Losing my father to cancer should have alerted me to the fragility of life. It opened my eyes some but even now, I still spend more time on my phone than I should. I can be spending time with my mom or friends and I still use my phone as a diversion? Is it that I’m trying to escape conversations? Maybe. But I think there is more to it than this. I think that using my phone constantly, it’s a way for me to keep my mind from getting stale. I constantly research current events, and areas that pique my interest. I’m a diehard college basketball fan. During that season, I’m often researching stats. It does me very little for my professional growth but I enjoy sports. It feels good to research that information but am I being smart with my time?

In today’s world, there is an app for everything. In many ways, it makes our lives easier because it provides quick information at our fingertips. Yet, there are some things in life that a person has to physically do in order to reap the rewards. For instance, you can’t expect a chef to prepare a meal by just programming an app. There is work involved. Physical labor is required. Doctors and nurses use physical labor to help heal us. They have the magic touch and when I say magic, I don’t mean poof and we’re healed. No. They take the time to take our vitals and help us by providing their expertise to assist us in our healing.

A lumberjack does not need to depend on an app. But there are things apps can help us learn. There are apps that can help us configure the right exercise and diets for us. There are also apps that can help us with many aspects that we all need. The key is to not let technology take us from the things that matter most.

While I am not a medical professional. I am a person who uses technology a lot. I can relate to many of you who are controlled by devices. I did a little research and found several resources that are helping me change my pattern. For example, the following information came from one of those sources. Click here for the direct link to them.

Here are a few tips that I found.

  1. Create a technology use policy. This helps you determine what you need and how often. Keep a journal or log of your behavior. It might surprise you how much time you spend with technology.
  2. Turn off technology at specific times in the day. If you get in the habit of this, you may start to recognize that there is a world that is all around you. It’s important to be a part of the world.
  3. Create NO-TECH zones. Sometimes we all have to do this. Otherwise, we will become so dependent that we are unable to adapt when technology isn’t available.
  4. Stop taking technology too seriously. That means to make some time for yourself and those around you. Technology can only do so much to make our lives easier. If all we live for is technology, we miss out on some incredible relationships.

No matter what you may believe about technology, it can be a fantastic resource but it isn’t a substitute for connecting with each other. It may allow for opportunities to meet new folks and expand our horizons on multiple plateaux of levels but when it becomes the only thing in your life that you live for, chances are you are missing out on many opportunities around you. Learn to disengage for a little bit of time each evening. You may find things that you never expected.

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