“The invention of too many useful things lead to too many useless people.” – Karl Marx
Nowadays, we can’t really deny that a lot of us are addicted to technology. In fact, if we ask people about one thing that they can’t leave the home without, there is a very high likelihood that they will answer “cellphone”. Depending on their line of work, some would say it’s a laptop. At the very least, it’s a watch. Indeed, technology is something that we can’t escape from as we live our lives today. Because of this attachment to technology, we give license for work to haunt us even when we’re at play or even when we are supposed to be getting ready for rest (in the bedroom).
I am very guilty of these things. I can’t leave the home without my 2 cellular phones and a watch. In fact, if I leave the home without a watch, I’d go to the mall and get one. As for my phones, either I really make a way for them to be delivered where I am, or I take a ride back home to fetch them. I remember a time when I decided to get a massage but then I still had my cellphones near my ear so I can check text messages every now and then. I eat beside my cellphones, sleep beside them, walk with them…basically, I live with them! Realizing all of these foolishness, it got me to thinking: has technology made me more efficient BUT less effective?
How did technology begin anyway? Technology began as a convenience. People realized that there are easier ways to do many things, and so we invented materials to achieve the ease that we were looking forward to. Then, I guess we became too comfortable with technology playing a big role in our lives, so we started using it for our intimacies as well. It’s even funny how we find ourselves still texting and IM-ing (instant messaging) people who live a desk or a seat away from us. I bet many teenagers even spend more time logging on to Facebook rather than spending time with their friends and family.
Being online gives you the idea that you are “outside”; and the bonus is that, with technology, we can put on a totally different persona and we can cut communication at will. That easy. I mean, how many times have you chatted someone up online and went offline (or invisible) just because the conversation got boring or pointless? Or how many times did you pretend to send a message on the wrong window (like that “accidental” wrong text you sent your crush)? Or copied a cool quotation and posted it up your Facebook wall to appear cool?
I sought advice from career websites online and found this as a very useful one: you must set boundaries for yourself with technology. Your personal life must be different with your professional life. Disengage from technology to make way for some me-time and resist temptation as much as you can. I also found out just recently that your intense relationship with your smartphone can affect the quality of your sleep, hence, affecting your health. They also said it’s best to keep the phones away during mealtime or during vacations.
Lastly, I think that the best way to really inculcate all of these is to remember that technology CAN NEVER substitute human interaction, actual communication skills and, of course, the real world. If you forget this part, you will be one of those useless people Marx was talking about. Hah.
I’m sure you have thoughts about this. Can we start a Technology Addicts Anonymous or something?