Earphones in – iPod on – World off
The trend started in the 80’s and has not stopped since. Isn’t it incredible how many folks you see who are all “plugged in”? We are bombarded by so much information chatter and also stress that it seems like a good idea to just have a moment of peace even though it may be quite loud. Tuning our surrounding environment out is the way to go, or is it? We just may miss the opportunity to make great connections.
I really noticed the trend with my one child who now runs her iPod more than ever. While I totally get that she likes to listen to her music and her desire to tune adults out – after all, the teenage years are not easy – it is still interesting what kind of opportunities for making great connections are missed every time this happens.
It is the equivalent to a truce and a bad one at that. It signals that we tolerate each other enough to hang out together, but we are not genuinely connected at eye (or ear) level any more. When do you have time to have sincere conversations anymore? Also, how do you have a first meaningful connection and conversation with a person that you do not know? Interestingly enough this even happens at work, where colleagues may now be unavailable for communicating with anyone. It is like our mental shutters are down and temporal isolation ensues.
How about this: If we do feel that we need our space and “plugging in” is the method to achieve this, why can’t we at least consciously provide these pockets of time where we make ourselves available for the folks closest to us and also set a time limit to spacing out? Let’s make a start by actively thinking about what we are doing to ourselves and then choosing our time slots for enjoying our leisure type noise.