Wednesday, March 6, 2013

I Dare You Challenge

Last week my husband and I were talking about how much of life gets totally wasted on technology, whether staring at a computer screen, an i-something or another or a droid something or another, phone or tablet.  This week, we kind of forgot that talk because we both were sick, and spent too many hours staring at a screen during our recovery.  We could have played real card or board games, instead of games on our phones.  We talked about it again tonight and are going to make some changes.

Our society seems to be glued to their smart phones.  People take them everywhere.  We were at a large sporting event a couple weeks ago, and 90% of the people sitting around us were on their phones, scrolling Facebook/Twitter, for a very large majority of the game.  I wanted to tell them that the statuses would still be there in two hours, they weren't missing anything earth shattering.  With what we paid for tickets, I was going to enjoy the game, not stare at my phone.  Plus, real life action is so much more exciting than reading that someone ate potato chips for dinner.  Today, I saw someone driving down the highway at 60 mph, both hands off the wheel, texting, head completely down.  She had no idea what was on the road in front of her.  If your text can't wait until you get home, then please pull off the road , stop your car, THEN text.  Other things I wonder about: Why do people go out to dinner and then spend the entire time on their phone?  Why do kids have to sit and stare at their parents, trying everything to get them to talk to them, while the parents spend their whole time staring at their phone?  I even observed an older teen and dad the other day in that situation.  The kid had her phone away, the dad did not.  The daughter tried to talk to her dad and dad just did the occasional uh huh until the daughter just got really frustrated and stopped trying.  Another time, a mom was with her four kids, all trying to talk with her about their day at school, but all she did was scroll Facebook and Instagram, and text, while her kids kept trying to tell her about their day.  Sad.  When you are with people, be with them.  Listen.  Engage.  Talk.  Care.  Put the phone away.  Social media will still be there when you are finished.  What is more important, real face to face relationships or reading posts that don't even affect your life? Yes, I have accounts many social media sites, and they have their place, but they need to have a place, not rule our lives.  The past few months I have taken a step back from my personal Facebook, and even took two weeks of not being on it at all on a personal level.  Honestly, for the most part, I didn't miss it.  When I did go back, I limited my time and I cut my lists of 'friends' down.  I didn't miss the drama, all the off hand, rude remarks people make to one another and think is ok, & the horrible profanity that has become a part of every day social media posts.  It seems the more we have to know about others lives on social media, (or snoop or spy, whatever you want to call it,) the less we want to have real, meaningful relationships.  We rush to read so and so's status update, but don't call them to check on them when we know they are having a bad day, we don't meet with them in person to have a real conversation, we don't show in a real, tangible way that we care, and it is showing in our society in a a very real way by how people treat one another.  People seem to forget that we are all human beings, created by God, and we are supposed to care for and about one another.

My hubby and I have decided to make our time together at night a no phone/tablet/computer zone.  The phone can be used to make or receive calls, yes they still do that, but that is all.  It's time to focus on having real conversations with others, to really live life, and grab the time we have here, not waste it.  Life is short.  We weren't given this life to spend hours on social media or staring at a screen.  Think of what you could have done with your spouse, your kids, your friends, your church, your community in the time you spent in front of a screen just since the new year.  Could you have talked more..played more..  cared more..loved more..taught more?  Could you have done something to improve your health, instead of making it worse by sitting in front of a screen?  Could you have gone outside and enjoyed the beauty that surrounds you?  Could you have touched a life and made a difference in a hurting heart?  We need to make a positive difference in the corner of the world we were put in, to be hands and feet that make a difference. Will you step up with me, and put the computer/phone away for ______hours a day, except to use your phone as a phone, and live life?   I dare you to give it a try this month, and get out and experience life, as it was meant to be lived.  

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