Clearly there are many factors that play into this, such things as "out of control" television and movie violence and tasteless subject matter, political leaders and role models who show lack of restraint and decency in their own lives, parents who fail to provide appropriate parental supervision, and the lack of a moral foundation in so many lives due to the loss of an active belief in God. And there are so many other factors which could be listed. But coupled with these is the lack of development of in person communications skills. Americans have lost the interpersonal communication capability due to lack of practice, much of which has been caused by the many enhanced products of modern electronics and computer technology. We no longer need many interpersonal skills to survive but, I think strongly, we do need to reinforce those lost skills if we really want to live and be happy. We weren't meant to live in an electronic cocoon.
Watch a crowd of people and it is easy to see. People wander about doing their shopping, driving, and walking with a cell phone of some type glued to their ear. It's as if the only thing that interests them is talking, but only when there is no in person contact. We are rude to each other, sales people and business associates when we see one another in person merely by our lack of social discourse. We are too busy talking on the phone or playing with a new app. Oh, I know they are convenient for lots of things and I sometimes am just as guilty myself, but I think it is causing us to lose grip on the social aspects of life.
The impact of this gradual modification to our behavior also carries over into so much more and especially in business. Every time I call a large corporate business, even small ones just trying to compete, and I get the message "your call is very important to us so please stay on the line", I just want to add "and maybe we'll eventually answer your call". It's maddening, it happens more and more and it's likely the reason that the radio master of the cheap deal, Clark Howard, is so fond of talking about customer NO service. The business is basically saying to you that we aren't interested in hiring enough employees to do the job right so this will just have to do for you. And as for internal customers, you know, other employees who you must work with, how many times do we substitute email correspondence for face to face? It's as if we are in our own little private entity wherever we are and we won't let anyone else in.
I have only touched the tip of the iceberg with my examples here. The full gamut of computer technology allows us to do much of our living without any direct in person interface and I know that this is not likely to change in the future. Modern convenience created by new technology offers many products and services to make our life easier. But I would like to make the suggestion that we at least be aware of the adverse consequences that can result and work hard to not let them destroy the social aspects of modern life, for man is indeed a social animal. And while we are glued to the phone or the laptop a world of living and breathing people is close by and needs us: our family and friends. We don't want our life to pass us by while our own flesh and blood loses contact with us even when we are under the same roof.
I read an article recently where a man said his new fancy phone is like a new mistress. Wife, family and friends were sacrificed and made to suffer because of it and he went on to say that he was making a pledge to put it in perspective and in its right place. That's what I'm talking about. Use the new technology wisely, don't let it grab hold of your life and change the real you. Believe me, folks, those around you will notice and be grateful for having you back.
Have a wonderful and relaxing weekend, have fun and be safe. Put the phone away for a few hours of quality time together. And God bless each of you and the United States of America.