By: D. A. Slinkard
I believe we are getting dumber and dumber by the day. It seems with each passing day we must do something to out-dumb ourselves from the day before. I especially get this feeling as I see everyone with their eyes glued to their phone screens. It is like looking at the sun…you know you need to look away but for whatever stupid reason, you just cannot resist the urge to look.
We need to be honest about how easy it is for us to get distracted in the day of technology. I originally sat down to write this article and before I knew it, I was looking at some news articles that had nothing to do with my article; and I fell for the trap. I lied to myself and said, “I will just look at this one website and then I will write the article.” Nope! How many others have fallen prey to this like me? Rhetorical question folks — we all have fallen prey except those people who do not have the internet.
There really are people who do not have the internet, and sometimes, I wish I was one of those people. But then I wonder what I would do without Google answering every dumb question I can think of. Go ahead and admit it. I know you too have asked Google something stupid. Your search history proves it. Yet we think we are going to be smarter than the other person who is getting sucked in by the World Wide Web. Do not deceive yourself and think you are something that you are not.
Going back to the cell phones; it seems everywhere I go I consistently see people with their cell phones out and a mindless gaze on their face. I quietly ask myself the question, “How did we make it in the past without cell phones and technology at our fingertips?”
I remember as a kid there were certain times you just did not call people like before 8 a.m. and after 8 p.m. The only time you would call before or after these times was if it was a true emergency, and now we call at all hours of the day just to say, “Did you see Sally’s Facebook post?” We are constantly connected to our phones, and because of this desire to be connected, we do dumb things.
We do dumb things because we allow ourselves to be distracted. In your life, what more could you achieve if you were able to eliminate just a few distractions? What else could you accomplish that right now just does not feel like there is a ray of sunshine for you? We need to be honest with ourselves because often we are too lenient on ourselves. My two girls are in disbelief anytime they look at my phone and do not see any games downloaded. Why? I do not want the distractions. Am I saying I am perfect? No, but I can tell you I do not get distracted by having games on my phone. If I had games on my phone, would I get distracted? Clearly this is why I have no games on my phone.
We need to hone our concentration levels because as we become more engaged with technology, we are becoming more disengaged with reality. It is a sad reality when young people would rather text their friends as opposed to having an actual conversation. How long will it be until the kids no longer know how to write their names using a pen and paper? This may sound silly, but remember that many schools no longer teach cursive writing. Thank you, Common Core education.
We need to put down the gadgets, and focus our attention back to our priorities. If we shift our focus to where it needs to be, we will eliminate some of the dumb mistakes we make. We live in the technological age; yet we are no better than those who did not have what we have. If you are going to use your gadget, I suggest downloading a “Notes” program so you can have a to-do list right there on you. As soon as you start to become distracted, open the app and see what still needs to be done. Utilizing this program will help you stay productive and less distracted. The other option is to grab a good old-fashioned notebook with pen and start your list that way. Either way will work.
By: D. A. Slinkard