Not so long ago, we millennials were rejoicing over the marvels of cell phones and the internet.
Technology has been making our lives simpler every day. In fact, we have become so addicted to these technological marvels that spending even a day without these gadgets make us feel deprived. Completing a task manually, instead of getting it done by a gadget, makes us ‘old-school’ and ‘uncool’. On the other hand, our parents endlessly rant about our lack of awareness of the ‘reality’ around – ‘reality’ that’s now become virtually and digitally veiled.
Of late, it seems like technology is threatening to ‘swallow’ us. Technology has paralysed us. Hence, we are always lurching for a technological support to sustain us. In fact, we have come to realise that shunning technology is almost ‘sinful’.
The more we realise our growing ‘incompetence’, the more we blame technology for our current plight.
We come across brochures, advertisements and TV talk shows blaming technological advancement for our inactive selves. When we fall sick, we blame our ‘modern lifestyle’ which leaves no scope for ‘self-care’. When we get obese, we blame our jobs that keep us glued to our seats. When our sight weakens, we blame the screens of the devices that we work on for not being ‘anti-glare’ ones. And the list goes on.
In fact, we have come to identify the cause(s) of these issues, ironically, with an almost ‘technological’ precision. However, have we ever thought whether we are identifying the correct causes after all?
A few days ago, I encountered a group of young people discussing the utility and benefits of smartphones in their lives. Now, it’s a proven fact that many of us can’t imagine living without smartphones. In fact, smartphones have become integral parts of the lives of the owners.
My issue lies with the way smartphones are being overused daily, way past the optimum level of usage – while studying, while travelling and even while dining. It seems like we have forgotten that we are the ones who decide what to do at different times of the day. Instead, we have slowly allowed technology to dictate and decide our daily actions and activities.
While accepting that technology is here to stay, we need to strictly moderate our use of technology according to the requirements of the situation. While we may be unable to control the amount of work that we need to do, we can surely control the way in which we work.
After being stationed at a single place for over eight a hours a day, we should make time for other activities. Yes, there may be no getting away from the cellphone. However, we need to interact and spend time with other people as well. We can also improve our diets or invest a little time in a workout session.
We should remember that no innovation can replace the intricacies of our bodies and minds. Technology is meant to be a boon. It can be a boon only if used effectively and within optimum limits.
As a final parting note, do remember that there is no gadget yet to bring us back to life when we die!