In case you missed it or might like to refresh yourself on the content, here is the link to the original message: Where Is Everybody? Where Are You?
Here’s what Pause readers had to say about their own experiences with this issue:
LL writes: I started to leave my phone upstairs when I go to bed at night. I used to use it as an alarm clock but not anymore. I just felt like this was starting to be a heavy bedroom partner and got rid of it! My husband is now my alarm clock!
LC writes: I know what you mean! It’s not just the young people anymore either. Yikes – I think we are caught up in the hype and the allure of technology. The most likely response is that the makers of the devices will ensure they can be smaller so people can’t see when you’re on them. It’s going to be a long time before this pendulum swings back the other way I fear.
VM writes: How true. Last evening a group of nine women travelled to PA for a concert and went to the restaurant for our evening dinner. None of us knew the start time of the concert and none of us had a smart phone to check. So we scanned the crowd in the restaurant for someone we knew from our hometown thinking they were likely in PA for the same reasons we were. Bingo! Within seconds someone was spotted, asked the question and we had an answer.
No one was flustered by the fact we did not have the technology to get us the answer, all of us were totally engaged with conversing and even changed seats at one point to engage with others further upstream.
We were a group of 60 plus year olds but many of us very familiar with technology. We have not bought smart phones because we do not want to be tied to the multiplicity of apps and demands of a smart phone. We are free!!!I have a small Samsung cell that enables me to do the very basics and I rarely use it.
LE writes: So true, Pat. It used to be that people took the break time to interact and network with those at the conference program – to debrief or to just connect. Now those who don’t reach for their phone just wander, as others are looking very busy.
BB writes: Good message! I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks everyone is withdrawing into their own little electronic world, living on their phones, on Twitter, on Facebook, etc.
I attended a church service on Christmas Eve with my 92-year old friend, her daughter, and her niece. Afterwards, as we tried to wade through the mass of people heading for the doors, the niece was checking her phone while I was holding on to her grandma’s arm.
Later, when the daughter drove us around town to see all the gloriously decorated houses in the rich part of town, the niece, who lives a hundred miles away, was again messing with her phone instead of looking at the colorful lights all around us. I can’t understand people like this.
While you gave your readers a good assignment, I’ll bet none of them would be willing to give up their cell phone for even a day.
CG writes: Amen to that, Pat!
SM writes: I couldn’t agree more … and feel as worried as you do. I keep remembering Courtney Milne’s comment: “The presence of your being is the greatest gift you can give.” Keep on keeping on with the message.
SF writes: A sad extension of this is that I’ve often seen a couple of people at lunch or supper together, and they are both busy texting rather than visiting with each other!
DF writes: Very well said. These thoughts fit perfectly with a previous post about meaningful conversations.
I am in a Cardiac Rebab Program that has me doing a lot of walking at the Field House with others in the program. I find it unbelievable to see 60 year old people (some younger, many older) talking on their cell phones or trying to text while they are walking. It’s not just a teenage issue.
Besides enjoying some of the walking time with my own thoughts, I enjoy conversations with other walkers. By the second or third chat, if they haven’t told me anything meaningful about themselves to use as a conversation opening, I have taken to asking, “So, what makes you happy these days?”
A few individuals answer with enthusiasm but most are completely taken off guard. Some would be less flustered it the question had been about their sex lives. It seems there isn’t much happiness these days. That’s one of the reasons it feels so good to bring a smile to someone’s face.
What are your thoughts in this issue? Agree? Disagree? Let me know where you stand.