The idea of being disconnected comes from the stress of advances in technology over the last decade. The rise of mobile phones, the internet and social media is truly changing the way that humanity is interacting. We have adapted to these new technological advances unknowingly and they have become an integral part of our modern lives.
I recently took a slow vacation and decided that as a part of it I would be completely disconnected from the digital world and rediscover the life that most of us have left far behind. With no mobile phone, no internet, no computer all that was left was the rich tapestry of face to face human interaction and nature. As a temporarily disconnected outsider to the digital age I was able to observe just how prevalent mobile phones have become as a means of communication and how also how it blocks connecting.
With no alternative other than to be present in the situation you found yourself in, you become aware of the break in interaction with others as they pulled out their devices and give it their attention instead of giving it to the people and environment around them. These interactions were easy enough to reestablish once the device’s message, email or chat had been answered but with each consecutive break the quality of the moment was further diminished.
Interestingly once people knew I was purposely travelling without a phone they were apologetic about the interruptions. Before that they weren’t… It seems that the norms of our society are changing. We allow these interruptions now, it’s almost a way to gives others a chance to check their own messages while they are waiting for you to return to them. This new paradigm shift has two sides to it, connecting with the distant (through our devices and the internet) and disconnecting with the near (your ‘now’).
Stepping away from the distant allowed me to bond with the situation and people at hand more fully, it was both engaging and refreshing. I saw, learned and felt more than I had in many years. It appears that by limiting the scope of your connectivity you also concentrate it. Furthermore when your connection is concentrated you can achieve a very deep sense of fulfillment from it. Inversely when we dilute our connectivity through various mediums that sense of fulfillment is also diluted.
If you are looking to find fulfillment in your connection with this world, it does make sense to make some time where you can experience a concentrated connection without the augmentation of technology. I recommend it.
If you like my views or my writing, don’t forget to take the simpler route and subscribe by entering your email in the bow in the top right and click the ‘simple’ button!