In the new decade ahead of us, we will no doubt continue to see amazing advances in technology. Online news, blog posts, Facebook updates, and tweets will most certainly expand their influence. The ability to pay digitally by simply swiping a cell phone will increase, leading to changing spending patterns. More and more we will be connected by technology.
But as people continue connecting digitally, there is a risk that we may simultaneously decrease in our ability to speak directly and spontaneously to each other. When we spend so much time on our phones, we can more easily lose the ability to focus on others in person.
We spend a lot of time with our phones, with one recent study indicating that young millennials check their phone on an average of 150 times a day! Educators are discovering that children are losing the ability to recognize non-verbal communication, are less likely to look someone in the eye, and while great at using emojis, can hide how they are really doing and feeling behind them.
We are heading into an amazing decade that we should cherish and use well. As we do, remember the value of personal relationships. When with others, be fully present! Don’t let your tech item disrupt your connections with people. Spend time with friends and family who are good for you. Resist indifference to others, even those who are different than you.
As the writer of Hebrews wisely puts it: “Let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another…” (Hebrews 10:24-25)
As we enter into the year 2020 and a brand-new decade, remember to turn off tech and tune in to people.