“Make sure to text me as a reminder to check Twitter to see tweets about the latest Instagram posts that are being talked about on Facebook.”
-Quote from a satirical cartoon
Is personal communication dead in the 21st century?
One wouldn’t think so going by the quantity of methods. Not only do we all have cellphones that allow us to talk to and text someone virtually anytime but we practically have our whole worlds in them. We have a barrage of social media platforms. We have email. We have Skype and/or Facetime.
And yet collectively, all these modes of communication are doing nothing but stressing us out. Ostensibly we’re all connected more than ever before. But psychologically, we’re more withdrawn than ever.
What is causing such a huge discrepancy?
Many psychologists and mental health experts have suggested that perhaps we’re taking communication for granted. Before cellphones, one had to make an effort to be in touch with loved ones that were not in the vicinity. Times and places had to be properly coordinated.
Another reward we all had was “me time.” If we went out for casual or leisurely activities, we were free to enjoy them without notifications being party poopers. We were able to decompose and then recharge, perhaps even be eager, to start communicating again. Now a days, unless we turn off our phones, we’re always “on.”
And even if we are able to share good news, it’s not exclusive. If you put something up on Facebook for your family and friends, your post may or may not be buried amongst hundred other posts.
So what’s the solution?
In my opinion, when sharing something pivotal, there has to be a distinction between sharing it family and “friends” on social media.
If you have big news, good or bad, pick up the phone and call someone before you put it out on social media. Just having the ability to say your news out loud to one person will make a huge difference to your mindset.
Secondly, take the time to decompose. A lot of people are averse to turning off their phones even temporarily because they might “miss something important.” But as previously mentioned, there was a time when we all had no choice but to do this when were bound by landlines. If something’s really important, you’ll find out either way at some point.
Last but not least, we need to change our way of thinking on a collective basis. We need to rid ourselves of the notion that it’s not possible bring about change in communication in this day and age. Anything is possible. It might take a little more effort and a little more convincing, especially for millennials. But that effort will go a long way in restoring our sanity back.
Do you feel communication or lack thereof is a problem in today’s age? How important is it to decompose personally to you? Do you agree with the possibilities of suggested solutions in this article? Share your thoughts and experiences by commenting below on our secure servers.