We know more people around the world have cell phones than have ever had landlines. There are almost as many cell phones in operation as there are people on the earth. It’s an epidemic.
How is this affecting us individually and in our relationships? You may not have the answer, but you can certainly understand the question.
Considering that more people have cell phones in our world than have flushing toilets, (yowsa!), the prospect of its effects is scary. Is this a silent disaster lurking to disconnect our world even amid the most rapid technological connection ever? Are we connected in ways that are ruining our relationships, health, and finances? We are currently the most obese and addicted society in history. Is our disconnect a contributor to this unfortunate statistic?
Consider your own life as an example. What is the first thing you pick up when you awake in the morning? A large part of the world’s population would say their smartphone, iPad, computer, or TV remote. For many, their device is the last thing they look at before going to sleep and the first thing they look at when they wake up.
For twenty-five years, I have studied human behavior and heard hundreds, if not thousands, of stories about the disconnect people feel. I’ve seen it firsthand from my colleagues, professors, and clients and even in my own personal life. I’ve discovered that we have many ways of disconnecting from ourselves and our loved ones; some we are conscious of, and some we are not.
There are helpful ways to connect—ways to bridge the divide that affects each of us relationally and individually.
To do this we each have to become aware of the ways we are disconnected and be cognizant of the role our digital devices play in each of our lives. Do they control us or are we in control of them? We check our phones over 150 times each day on average, and we spend 10 hours each day in front of screens. This is more than 2/3 of our day. Is this why we are struggling with anxiety and focus?
We can change and disrupt our unhealthy tech habits and take action to enjoy connection and happiness in real-time.