We live a life of interruptions. Unceasing stream of stimulations. Notifications from messengers, social media, emails, shopping apps, and a thousand more. It is killing our focus like death by a thousand papercuts. We need apps to keep us focused and then they themselves keep us distracted. The urge to refresh and check for notifications is insatiable.
People get texts, and they respond. The responders then at some point become initiators, and the story goes on. Eventually, even the kids who don’t want to be attached to their phones don’t have such an easy choice. In a culture where everybody sends each other 200 texts a day, you get left out if you only send 30. We are no longer concerned about the fragmentation of our attention or our dependence on devices. Our devices are an extension of ourselves. Our devices were supposed to be our tools. May be it is time to pause and think who is the master and who is the tool.
Technology has brought us an abundance of information and uninterrupted connections with friends, family and employers. I refer to technology in a far broader sense than smartphones or computers.
If unbalanced, it becomes the bringer of chaos.
The message of the world today is that if you want to hang on you better speed up, you better get used to the chaos, the maddening flurry of incessant action.
But it’s useful to remind everyone that our basic needs never change. The need to be seen and appreciated. The need to belong. The need for nearness and care and love. This is given only through slowness, reflection and togetherness. There we will find real renewal.