One of the strongest need of the hour is to connect. Authentically connect! But are we truly connected? Let’s go through a few questions before starting the discussion.
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👎 Do you get upset when someone replies late to your messages?
👎 Do you get upset when your bae or boo forgot to send you a good morning or good night text kiss?
👎 Do you get disappointed by seeing only blue ticks and no replies?
👎 Do you take a pause of 5 minutes to reply a message to not sound creepy?
👎 Do you delete your long messages filled with emotions and feelings or cut short it , to not look desperate or weak?
👎 Are you afraid of calling someone and instead choose to text them? (fuck, i just texted my sir to give my online lecture payment) Because it puts you in an uncomfortable situation.
It is so much easier to polish what you can say when you don’t say it directly, but record a message or write a text. It is so much easier to put up a nice facade when you have a technology screen between you and the audience. It is much easier to hide. Hide behind a mask. In fact, we have learned to unconnect from others. We have started calling rather, than dropping in for a visit. We have started texting rather, than calling. We have started posting for our followers, rather than staying in touch.
True problem of today’s society is the loneliness pandemic. We live in big buildings, we have so many flats, so many people around us. We live in this world where we are separated by a lot of people. On social media, we have hundreds, thousands of friends. I have more than 1000 friends on Facebook (not a single one i interact with). Some of us have millions of followers on Instagram. We live in a world of bit sized communication. People usually put their best face on social media, which isn’t true.
- Don’t reply to a message too fast, its creepy
- Don’t write very long messages, its creepy.
We are so obsessed with our reach, that we have unlearned to connect. Research shows that number one killer in society is social isolation and loneliness. I am a space admin at Quora. Most of the questions i come across are,
- Why do we feel alone even though we are connected to each other by technology ?
- I feel very alone almost everytime ,but there is no best friend with whom i can share everything. How can i solve this problem?
- Whenever, i turn on my internet, i don’t get any Whatsapp notification. No one is there to talk with me and sometimes i feel like crying. What should I do?
Here is the one of the lovely answers to them
The small devices don’t only change what we do, but also changes what we areSherry Turkle
‘Before it was, i have a feeling i want to make a call. Now it is, i want to have a feeling , i need to send a text’. We all sit together to be more apart from each other. Sherry Tuckle in her book ‘Alone together‘ says, we expect more from technology and less from each other. What’s the problem with real life conversation? (keeping in mind social distancing). It takes place in real time and you can’t control what you say. Texting, emailing, posting all of these things let us present ourselves, how we want to. We can edit, we get to retouch ,we get to delete.
I may say, i am thinking about you, i have started liking you. But, you never know the emotions associated with those texts. You can’t express your emotions through technology. Even though, you feel like crying, you are angry, you are upset, you end up sending a smily emoji ☺ to sound friendly. ‘We sleep thinking always being connected would make us less alone, but we are at risk.’ Opposite is true. ‘If we are not able to be alone, we are going to be lonely.’
If we don’t teach our children how to be alone, they will only know how to be lonely- Sherry TurkleTweet
Problem is not with the social media. Problem is how we define it, priortize it and use it. Convenience has made us lazy. More likes = more self esteem. This is how we define ourselves. Your worth is based on how many comments you get. We have reduced our vocabulary. Example : omg, lol, wtf (what the face),haha.
Are we using social media to benefit the society? Is someone profiting from your posts? Or are you using it to post your dog pictures which nobody likes ?
What i personally recommend is keeping no gaps while texting. You see a notification, you reply right away. (allot a time for texting, doesn’t mean you sit like a moron texting the entire day) Have something worthwhile to do in life. You see someone commented on your post , reply them right away. Let them know they are associating with humans and not with a person displaying fake facade. Try calling more than texting. Try meeting more people than calling (wait, don’t not be in a hurry now, lockdown is going on)
I think we all lived better if we had hands to hold, rather than keys to click – Allison GrahamTweet
Social media doesn’t give you real life warm hugs, hot soups, coffees. Now, the time is to prioritize real life connections. It will suck at firstttt. But the more you make yourself vulnerable, more people will understand and connect with you.
So what do you do to maintain real life connections during the pandemic ?
Let me know in the comments.
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