Put it Down

I'm going to start this post off by asking you to look around. Where are you right now? What are the people doing? Maybe you're sitting in a coffee shop, in the library, at work, or sitting in a restaurant. Look at those around you and count how many people are sitting on their phones. Texting, scrolling Facebook, snap chatting, or checking their emails. I can almost guarantee that more often than not those people you are observing are sitting on their phones.

We live in a society that is all consumed by our electronic devices. I am 110% guilty of this myself and I am quite certain that a large majority of you reading this are as well. I don't want to admit it, but I have been completely sucked into this generational adoration with technology. The constant feeling of needing to have my phone with me as if it is s a comfort item. The feeling that if we aren't checking social media we are missing out on something, when so often social media only makes us feel more depressed. It's sad when you think about it and when you think about it so much.

I was talking with my dad the other night and he had me watch a short YouTube clip about the generation we live in and our obsession with our phones. The speaker talked about how we go out to eat with a friend and keep our phone on the table. We text, snap chat, perhaps even answer the phone of another friend, simply showing the friend we are physically with that they aren't enough. What message does this send? We go to catch up with an old friend at a coffee shop and we constantly check our phone and see if another friend is talking to us. The screen lights up and everything in the room is irrelevant. Is there a better offer of something to do right now? This video was a reality check, and a reminder of how obsessed this generation is with our cell phones.

Like I mentioned before, I myself am so, so guilty of this. Some days I'm better about it and keep my phone in my backpack during class or in my jacket pocket while out with friends. Many days I refrain from instagramming or snap chatting what I'm doing because I want to personally soak in what's going on around me and enjoy it for what it is. Some days I avoid social media altogether and focus on studying, my family, or simply myself. And other times I leave a text conversation because I would rather have that face-to-face communication. But these are not my daily actions, and I know I should be doing it more, and so should you.

I was at Starbucks this morning and while waiting in line I didn't pull out my phone and scroll through Instagram. The woman behind me in line asked me if there was a college close by as a handful of people were sitting with laptops and textbooks. We began talking about the town and I learned she had just moved to the area from out of state. She asked me about school and my major. She asked me about the area and things to do in the winter here. We both ordered our drinks, got our drinks, and continued to chat. I honestly do not remember the last time this happened. That I wasn't on my phone passing the time, and she wasn't on her phone, and instead we had a real life conversation. With a stranger. Something that is so normal, but never happens any more and is often considered "weird" or even "rude". If someone stops you at the store to say something or someone asks you a question in line often people get annoyed. Everyone is in such a rush these days and is in such a hurry to move.

With Christmas just days away, this is such a busy time. Everyone out running their last minute errands and stressing out about seeing their family and being the perfect host. Stop. Take a step back. Put down your phone, close your laptop, and look around you. This is such an incredibly hard time for so many people and myself included. Talking to this woman today helped remind me that there are so many great people out there. Her friendliness reminded me the true reason for Christmas and helped me see beauty in the holiday despite not having my sister here. Avoiding my phone for a few hours the other day helped me enjoy time catching up with a friend, and not worrying about who posted what on their snap chat story and who entered a relationship with who on Facebook. Taking a break from binge watching Netflix helped me enjoy lunch and time with my mom, just the two of us.
In this time of year where everyone is in such a rush, slow down. I wish Alex was still here. I wish I could go buy her a Christmas gift and be stuck at the kids table with her on Christmas Eve. I wish I could laugh with her about our silly Christmas traditions and pose for cliche sibling pictures on Christmas Eve, like everyone else. I wish I could bake with her and read the Night Before Christmas one more time together, despite always complaining to our mom that we were too old for it. I wish I could have just one more Christmas with her. So, as I and so many other people are wishing for loved ones to be here this Christmas, put your phone down, and look around. Talk to your aunts and uncles from out of town, let your grandpa tell you old stories even if they're boring, play games with your little cousins, laugh about the silly traditions, and partake in the cliche and candid photos. You never know if it's the last Christmas with the ones you love, so soak it all in and remember what's truly important. And it all begins by just simply putting your phone down.




Comments

  1. Hi,I'm the Anonymous one commented on your last blog. Getting rid of phone is a great idea at this era. Wish you and your family have a blessing Christmas!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Merry Christmas to all of you and I hope you all have a wonderful times with your family and it can only be if you stop paying attention to your smartphones and mobile gadgets.

    ReplyDelete

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