In a world where electronic devices are running rampant, we often overlook the power involved in communication. In a world where most conversations are carried through texting, facebook messaging, or other means of social media, we often overlook the power of our words. Instead of sentences filled with meaning and purpose, we have to whip up an ironic, funny, sometimes biased statement in 140 characters or less—all in the hopes of getting the most likes, favorites or retweets.
Social media is a gateway drug to popularity fights and the social ladder. The definition of ‘friend’ seems to be distorted by what Facebook has to say. To our society, a friend is nothing more than someone you’ve met maybe once or twice, you have a few mutual friends, and you are okay with letting each other know what’s going on in your life. But does that really show a friend of worth? Wouldn’t you rather have a friend who can care for you, keep you accountable, and could care less about seeing a picture of you and your friends at lunch on vacation?
People care more about how many likes they can get, how many friends they can acquire. We don’t even see the importance of communication anymore. When we spend more time conversing with people over a device than say, face-to-face, it shows a lot about who we are as people. We are basically saying we don’t have time to get to know people; that we could care less about intimacy and commitment.
But wait, Emma—I still want to grow close with my friends and get to know them. Are you saying that if I talk to people over devices that I won’t have good relationships?
No, I think that communication through devices is a great thing to have. But if you never make time to go grab a coffee and catch up with someone, then you are doing something wrong. Texting isn’t a free pass to never have social interactions, outside of your device. Texting is a way to keep the conversation going, despite not being face-to-face anymore. It’s all about perspective. If I sit here on my phone all day, and wait for people to text me, chances are, they won’t always be reliable. But if I go out and spend genuine time with people, I don’t have to worry about being glued to my device, waiting for someone to start a conversation. Go be a doer, not a waiter. You will be much happier in life.
All in all, I don’t want to see a world were the only way we connect is masked behind a screen. It deprives up from the gentle nature of human interaction. It takes away from the fact that we need each other. And not words that they type up with their fingers—probably with a large help from auto-correct. Spoken words have so much more affect than written words. You know they actually care if they take the time to say them aloud to you.
Are you willing to cut down on your social communications to get out in the real world and grow as a person? To not have to worry about how many likes, retweets or favorites you’ll get? The less time you worry about social media, the more time you’ll experience the joy of genuine friendships. It’s a choice you have to contemplate at some point.
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