Hiding Behind The Keys
The growing impact of texting has not produced better communication. It has definitely increased the amount of communication but not the quality of our time with others. People have integrated into the lives with others the ability to "hide" their real selves and often seek individual affirmation and identity through the virtual world of electronic relationships.
I cannot tell you how many times my own teenagers will outwardly share their frustrations with others because of the (back and forth) 50 line text with another friend. And it doesn't even occur to them to use the phone for its intended purpose (A PHONE!). They seem to forget that the phone was invented to TALK with others and listen to them personally. Wow, what a concept.
What drives me crazy is that other forms of social networking have also begun to cripple our society because of the real lack of interpersonal relationships. Many are now incorporating "virtual identity" (allowing their social network life to determine their identity) into their personal identity. It won't take you very long to recognize this. Within 60 seconds of viewing your favorite social network, just watch as people post or chat about their animals, their food they so proudly made, and especially their kids.
OK, I get it. Social networking has greatly increased our ability to share our joys with others. Awesome. But I have also discovered way too many persons now view communication electronically as the norm instead of verbal, face to face conversations. What disturbs me even more is this trend disabling individuals from really dealing with root issues in their personal and social lives. That's crazy. Great communication tools designed to help us communicate are actually having a grave impact on our personal growth and development. Just like anything else, too much of a good thing can harm you. Yes, even social networking.
It's time to stop hiding behind the keys and increase the amount of "facetime" we have with those involved in our lives.
Communication is KEY in today's world. Let's take full advantage of those electronic opportunities to maximize our lives. But let's not let it determine who we become by ignoring ourselves or others.
Posted by Mike Bearden