If you are a millennial, chances are you have bought a weapon of mass destruction and in fact, you’re probably using it at this very moment. It fits in your pocket or on your desktop and it appears relatively harmless on the surface. Technology is the drug of our generation, constantly consuming up to 18 hours a day of millennial minds. The addiction is fueled through the fast-paced advantages of a thriving social network that is conveniently available at our fingertips. The mobility, accessibility, and affordability of technology has completely altered the way we live our lives, especially since we constantly crave the need to be engaged by checking our devices about 45 times a day! With the click of a button, you can share photos with all of your friends, confirm overnight shipping for a last-minute gift, and even video-chat with someone on the complete opposite side of the world. With something so powerful, how could we possibly live without it? And that is precisely the problem.
Like the majority of you, I’m definitely guilty of becoming so overwhelmingly reliant on the enhancement technology seems to have on my life that I feel anxious and lost without it. The unhealthy dependence and reliance created by this behavior is causing dehumanization by isolating us from the face-to-face contact with others. Meaningful connections developed in social relationships are dwindling through the preferred alternative of texting, emailing, and even one-night-stand dating apps. The increase in communication with family and friends via technology has strongly indicated a decrease in not only the quantity of face-to-face interactions, but the quality as well.
What we initially thought of as an enhancement to our lives is beginning to embody the complete opposite. As technology continues to advance and improve, people seem to be shifting in the opposite direction. We are forming a habit of second-guessing our instincts through the reassurance of relying in artificial intelligence. There is a global threat of disconnection from our social environment and mass destruction of creativity.
So how can we learn to recharge our minds and energize our social lives? Let’s skip the anonymous meetings and therapy sessions. My idea is quite simple: less is more. No, I’m not suggesting resorting to text-message carrier pigeons (though talk about suspense in waiting for a reply!). What the Tech is here to help encourage healthy habits of technology use for optimizing human computer interaction through bringing awareness to the ways it distracts, influences, and controls the way we live.
So put down the headphones you’ve been trying to untangle for five days and get ready to feel inspired to be unwired!