Disenchantment doesn’t usually happen overnight. It is a slow steady decline in satisfaction until one day you realize things either need to shape up or you need to ship out. Now, I’m all for trying to work things out, but when you can’t, I completely believe in exercising our freewill to move on because staying in a dysfunctional situation– either at work or home– is simply not healthy for anyone.
Lately, I must confess that my disenchantment is primarily centered on our over-use of technology. As I look around me everywhere I go, everyone seems glued to their smartphones. On the metro, very few of us actually read the paper or have conversations with real human beings anymore. At work, most of my daily interactions with clients are via email instead of the face-to-face meetings that I so enjoy. By the time I go home, I rarely watch television and instead prefer to read or listen to music. Indeed from 8pm until 8 am I turn off my phone, unless I’m expecting a call from a loved one. And lately I’ve found true bliss by unplugging on the weekends or on vacation for even longer periods of time, yet sadly I am painfully aware that I am in the real minority among fellow GenXers and the Millenials.
To truly connect with those you love, you have to spend real time with them and fully immerse yourself in the moment. Many seem to be losing the essential skill of staying present, but how will you ever develop meaningful bonds and nurture the love you already have if you cannot spend uninterrupted quality time with one another free of all other distractions?
For two entire weeks this month I completely unplugged, and let me tell you it was pure joy. The already strong attachment to my immediate loved ones just grew exponentially, and so did my disdain for modern technology, which in the past provided me with so much entertainment. Don’t you find it interesting that as the real bonds grew stronger the artificial connections evaporated? I am convinced it is not a coincidence, and I encourage others to set higher limits on themselves– avoid the mind-numbing entertainment at your fingertips, and go challenge your mind, body and soul in other ways.
Have I lost that loving feeling? Towards technology, for sure, but not with those that matter most. If you want to make your real love last, I urge you to unplug and spend more quality time with those that actually matter most to you, otherwise don’t be surprised if they lose that loving feeling towards you.
By Regina A. DeMeo, Esq.