We all suck.
Seriously, how many times have you fingered your phone today. No really, try to come up with a number. How many times did you glance down, feel a ghost vibration, respond to a text, check your email, check your Facebook, check your…
Are we ever fully present? Are we ever truly in one place?
Watch your friends. Next time you’re together, watch them and see how often they look to their phone for “something.”
Where are our minds if we’re constantly looking for something, never fully content with the present, always half waiting for something.
Two weeks ago, I left Portland for a much needed seven day vacation. The familiar glowing cabin lights and computer powered headrest made sure to remind me that my flight was wifi enabled– a godsend any other week. I’m one of those passengers that keeps my phone on, despise the warnings. No airplane mode, service at 30,000ft. I watched the Myth-busters, everyone’s safe, and I get my text messages on time. But not on this flight, for the first time in ages, my phone was put to bed.
It stayed that way for seven consecutive days. Kübler-Ross flew with me for the first three, but then, it happened. Sweet, sweet, technological freedom. No ghost vibrations, no email, nothing but the present. I was able to be fully engaged, moments of silence were spent thinking, not mindlessly perusing the many apps that have infiltrated my phone through various recommendations and readings.
I don’t know if my friends noticed the change. I’m sure on some level, however slight, they did. But more importantly, I did. I felt better. I was in the moment, not searching for other moments, my friends moments, past moments, moments to capture, moments to prove that I experienced a moment. My memory improved, not crowded with thoughts fueled by thousands of miles of disconnect.
I’m not sure what any of this means. I’m not sure where this leaves us. I boarded the plane back to Portland and sighed with relief when the familiar glow filled the cabin and I connected to the network. My mind space filled with emails, texts, and notifications. Slaying the feeling of digital disconnect one email at a time.
We find ourselves empowered by technology like never before, but at what cost.