Tuesday, 2 August 2016
Have you had a break from technology?
This post is a bi-product of what I like to call a Technology Sabbatical. We are familiar with Sabbaticals, and if we aren't it basically means you are taking some time apart from whatever you decide.
Wikipedia explains it as a day of rest and worship. While I wasn't worshipping anything, I was
resting from the constant use of technology.
Why would I take a sabbatical from technology when life is suppose to be so much easier with it?
I wrote this post with pen and paper, it is an unusual occurrence and will take x2 as long to write since I will need to transcribe everything onto a 'word' document so I can share my experience with you.
What is technology? My definition: anything that needs power to operate. The oxford dictionary: The application of scientific knowledge for practical purposes especially in an industry; Machinery and equipment developed from the application of scientific knowledge.
Internet, phone, T.V., kindle, Ipod (audiobooks), car, electric toothbrush, Air conditioner, microwave, toaster, let's sum it up, kitchen appliances, lights, emails, elevator etc.
We have become so dependent on technology, separating from technology becomes a real challenge especially if you aren't prepared to do so. Imagine an electrical wave hits the city and our electrical grid goes down and everything that's is battery powered becomes useless. How would we live?
We are innovative beings by nature, we have survived for millions of years according to scientist that have gathered data from fossil forms. Professors Trevors and Saier have concluded in their academic article that we are now in an era of a technological civilization.
We use technology to improve our lives although that same technology has limitations and can create new destructive problems to our environment such as pollution.
Today I am using a lot more sticky notes for things to do when the Sabbath is over. How unsettling is this? Am I making my life more complicated/busy with the use of technology when it is suppose to be doing the opposite? More things to do?
Creating a mere to do list or work related business I suppose is something to take into consideration here and we wont get into it in this post.
We take a break from technology when we go camping in the woods away from any reception area, so not your typical camp grounds that probably have free WiFi. The true test is when you are surrounded by technology and it is right there by the palm of your hand to avoid using it all together, when the beeps, tweets and rings go off.
Does it make me feel good resisting? At the moment when the beeps go of, no. In the back of my mind I keep thinking what if it is someone important? Or something that cannot wait? The good news is the novelty wears off. You forget about your notifications as soon as you are focused on a task.
The Attention Economy.
We hear this all the time. Do we understand what attention economy is? Mark Manson, Gary Vaynerchuck and many others who are great at keeping our attention explain it well, "we are living in times where we have so much information and our attention is becoming far more scarce than any other resource in the developed world."
"When you earn someone's attention and keep it you have won."
My beliefs and the way to get creative about them:
"No internet, surfing or finding new material."- no distractions, reinvent the material you already possess.
"No emails, phone, communication or engagement."-They can wait. Technology serves me, I am not a servant to technology. If it was dire they can reach out to me through other means, by getting creative.
"No T.V., Kindle, Ipod, learning anything new."- Time to review what I have already learned. This is a part of my routine, only I get to spend more time to do so today. Review is important because retaining things that are important and useful without repetition becomes extremely difficult.
Things you have already learned can bring new insights in upon deliberately reviewing them, you will see things you have missed or have forgotten.
"Am I going to go hungry without a microwave, oven, stove, or fridge?"- I have a confession to make. I used the fridge, I couldn't resist, and eventually I will need to start turning on lights or I can light candles. However, all the other gadgets I can do without. Sorry no gourmet meals today.
"No car, electric tooth brush, work?"- Living downtown is great because it is very public transit friendly and I get around on my bike everywhere. I used my toothbrush the old fashioned way.
You want to become creative? Eliminate something that you use all the time or do something the opposite of what you normally do, your creativity is bound to kick into high gear to create a solution to your circumstance.
On a side note my next goal is a no talking sabbatical, that should be an interesting one, get the note pad and sharpie ready.
Where would I need to go if I don't have anyone to communicate with? Not many people love to do the "pop by" which I think will be a topic for another time to understand the why.
"No work?"-Did you catch that in my previous paragraph? There is always work. I am working on organizing, accounting and rereading my client files. There is enough work for me to do for a few weeks without the use of technology.
So how does technology effect society?
Read the rest here, I talk about the benefits and the other sabbaticals I have done