Self Improvement

Why I Will Never Take A “Technology Break”

technology break, digital detox, digital break

My family and my brother’s family traveled to spend Father’s Day weekend with my parents. Sitting around the kitchen table, my father was poking fun of the fact that there were several people on their smart phones checking Facebook, Twitter or texting instead of interacting with the people around them.

As the popularity of smart phones and the use of social media exploded over the last few years, this phenomenon has become almost commonplace. I know I’m certainly guilty of feeling like I need to post a picture of what I’m doing to Facebook instantly instead of living in and enjoying the moment. I’m also guilty of checking my phone for email or social media notifications when I’m stopped at a red light. After all, I’ve got a spare 40 seconds, why not?

Technology

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

This has led to people questioning whether they should take designated “technology breaks” where they put the smart phones away, turn the computers off, hide the TV remote for a day or a weekend in order to really enjoy the people around them, and the world they live in.

The problem is, these technology breaks simply don’t work.

I’ve seen friends take a break from social media for weeks at a time, then return by announcing they’re back, and spending just as much time online as they did before. In my opinion, taking a break from technology just gives a person a reason to justify spending even more time online when they return.

A friend of mine asked on facebook recently if anyone of his friends would consider taking a break from technology. My answer was a resounding, “No.” Technology is meant to make our lives easier, why would I take a break from using things that make my life easier?

It’s simply about learning balance, courtesy, and common sense.

It’s actually pretty easy if you think about it:

  1. When sitting at a red light, would you start opening your mail that you just retrieved from your mailbox, or pull out a pen and paper and start writing a letter to your friend? No? Then leave your email alone.
  2. If you’re sitting at the dinner table with your family, would you dial up a friend and have a conversation with them in front of the others at the table? No? Then leave social media off.
  3. When ordering at a restaurant, or checking out at a clothing store, do you normally tell employee to wait while you finish up a conversation with your friend standing right next to you? No? Then why would you initiate, or receive a phone call when you know you need to give your attention to someone trying to provide a service for you?

As we were getting ready to leave my parent’s house, I noticed the forecasted high for the day was well into the 80’s, but we had left our air conditioning off. I didn’t want to come home to an uncomfortably warm home, so I pulled up my smart phone app for my wifi enabled thermostat and turned on the AC from across the state. By the time I got home a few hours later, my house was a cool and comfortable haven from the warm summer temperatures.

Technology use at it’s finest.

We don’t need to take breaks from technology. Technology is not evil. We simply need to learn how to use it correctly.

How do you misuse technology?  Have you ever thought about taking a “technology break?”  Do you think it would work?

Brought to you courtesy of Brock

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About the author

Brock Kernin

6 Comments

  • I agree with you — technology makes our lives easier, so I see no point in having technology breaks, unless you’re ‘really’ addicted to it. As long as you use it in moderation and still aware of your surrounding instead of completely occupied with your smartphone, I think it’s fine to have technology by your side at all times.

  • @Suburban Finance – Even if a person is a technology abuser, just taking a break won’t help….the root problem must be addressed. Avoidance won’t fix the issue, right? Thanks for reading, and commenting!

  • @Money Beagle – I think using “real” example of people interacting with each other makes it pretty clear when a person is abusing technology and being rude, don’t you? thanks for stopping by!

  • I love technology and I think it can (and should) be used ot better one’s life. You’re right though – there are many times/places in which technology just doesn’t belong. It shouldn’t be a barrier for human connection, and it shouldn’t be dangerous (ie checking email when driving).

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