When’s the last time you checked your email? Your cell phone? According to an article on the Huffington Post, two thirds of us check our mobile phones for calls or messages even when the phone isn’t ringing or buzzing.
Which is kind of compulsive — Pavlovian, for sure. It maybe even qualifies as slightly crazy. When’s the last time you checked your land line for missed calls after hours of silence?
Let’s face it, technology has made willing slaves of us all, whether we’re madly scrolling through our Facebook timelines, posting photos of our breakfasts or mindlessly primping for selfies — oh, for the days when people would run from having their photos taken! Low self-esteem never looked so good.
Narcissism, however, is the least of our problems posit experts in the Huffington Post piece who worry that we’re overstimulating and overloading our brains with so much stuff that it’s having a deleterious affect on our “sense of meaning.”
We may have all the facts and an infinite store of information, but we have no cohesive or discerning method of assembling them into a narrative that makes any sense.
Add to that our addiction to work and our insistence on being connected to everything (except our immediate surroundings apparently) and we are running ourselves ragged.
With physical depletion comes a decline in the things that tend to give our lives meaning — reflection, imagination, creative thinking, says Tony Schwartz, CEO of the Energy Project, who is quoted extensively in the article.
Schwartz offers advice for stepping off the technology treadmill, not the least of which, should also prove the most pleasurable.
Quit working all the time! Take breaks. Join your colleagues for lunch and leave your Blackberries behind at the office. Use up your holidays.
Let the virtual world vanish into the ether and start to tell yourself a story with meaning — and restrict clicker training to your dog.
What do you do to unplug during the day? Tell us in the comment section below.