With new technologies and smartphones evolving human connections and communications are diminishing.
Face to face meetings and conversations are happening less.
Email is part of our everyday life and we use a myriad of apps to communicate with people.
Organisations have hot desks and we work remotely with fewer face to face conversations.
People prefer to email their colleagues rather than getting up to find the person they need to talk to.
If it sounds daft believe you me, it happens I have been in that very office.
Absorbed by social media, the internet and our inboxes.
Searching for information on a site often takes us on a different journey to the one we started out on.
Tied to our inboxes and computer screens is not helping our minds or our emotional wellbeing.
In the age of social and digital media, we take for granted the ease with which we connect.
Connecting and communicating with friends and family, clients and businesses are seamless.
We are losing physical connections preferring the ease of the various messaging services available.
The kitchen and the water coolers once the domain for office gossip and chatter have almost disappeared.
In its place are Television, radio, newspapers, magazines, mobile phones and websites provide the news and keep us informed.
Do we really need physical communication?
We are more anxious and jittery and overwhelmed by information overload and feel threatened, isolated and fearful by social media and FOMO.
We should be doing more, we should be doing less, we need to be more mindful, we need to exercise, we should have a great bunch of friends, we need more money, we need to buy more, we need more holidays.
The list is endless.
Information bombarding our already overwrought and over-anxious minds.
Technologies designed to make life easier, speed up our productivity and make our lives simpler are having the reverse effect.
We are slaves to the very gadgets designed to make our lives less complicated.
Take our email inboxes which inundated with emails and if you don’t respond to an email straight away you get another reminding you to respond to the first as if life depended on it.
We are in a perpetual state of anxiety and confusion.
Many small business owners I know are overwhelmed by their inboxes one particular director of a £2.5 million turnover company expressed his wish to bomb his PC.
He receives up to 200+ emails daily whilst managing major construction projects this has created over 3000 emails.
And this is without other customer work and personal emails.
He admits that he is a slave to his PC and his desk.
A lady told me that she had just finished answering 163 emails in one morning, that’s before she even gets down to her real work.
Is there an easy answer?
No there isn’t.
Because by making an effort to reduce the amount of time we spend looking at our inboxes only serves to increase our workload and anxiety.
All we can do is be more aware of the amount of time we spend in front of the screen and on social media.
Being mindful about how we use technology helps us value our time better.
Easier said than done.
We can be conscious of what we are doing and where we are at any given moment.
At the start of the New Year, how many emails, ads and posts on social media did you see advertising productivity and mindfulness planners, designed to change your life for the better?
It is hard to disengage from these distractions.
Disengaging ourselves from these mindbending gadgets and media will help us become more focussed on what is important.
Problem-solving when there are so many distractions makes it impossible to think clearly and work out a solution.
We are social media addicts.
Many are spending too much time on the web whether it’s searching for information or interacting on social media.
From text to WhatsApp, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest we are ON some form of social media and spend time pouring over its contents.
The reality is an over-dependency on the internet, a world that is almost solely digital.
Where relationships are transient and superfluous and where the individual wants to be the centre of the digital universe in which they reside.
We’ve become self-obsessed we get sucked into how we think we need to act and behave because we believe it will garner more likes and shares.
Online connections give us a feeling that we really matter, that our connections are genuinely interested in us.
It also provides a platform to share details that we might not want to talk about face to face.
We can overshare by pouring out our heart and soul on social media but not talk to a friend?
Would we rather lose our connection to the physical world than to the online universe?
Has social media made us antisocial or can we regain that human interaction that I think so many crave?
What do you think?