I love phones. The technology is amazing. And it’s changed our lives immeasurably in good ways. You can stay connected with people all over the world and keep track of your steps. You can listen to books and music, and you can find the closest coffee shop. There are just so many incredible conveniences that phones have added to our lives. And make no mistake, I have one sitting beside me as I type this.
I am a fan of phones.
On the other hand, there are challenges too. We all know that. But the number one challenge I see with our devices is our inability to think on our own. The phone has not only become a convenience. It’s our number one source for all information and entertainment.
The Phone is our babysitter.
Our phones have become the number one tool for keeping us from being alone with our own thoughts. When we are standing in line, we grab our phones to keep us busy. If you are sitting in a restaurant, we have our phones to make sure we are not bored. Or God-forbid, we are sitting at a traffic light with nothing to do for 15 seconds, “let me grab my phone!”
I am not just vilifying our phones on this. But it’s a phenomenon that is hard to deny. Many of us are so uninterested in “getting lost in our thoughts,” that we have given up the ability to think at all. We are using these devices to tell us what to think…and what to think about.
So what can we do about it? Make time to think.
When was the last time you went for a walk (or a jog) just to think about an issue you were facing? Have you considered driving to work in silence? There is power in taking the time to just let the brain go where it will. And there is certainly a skill in digging deep to tackle an issue or create a new solution without the assistance of outside noise.
The future will be created by original thinkers.
It will be created by those that “get lost in their thoughts.” But you will need to be intentional about giving yourself the space to do that thinking. Especially in this world so filled with distractions and technology.
Technology is not the enemy. But we need to start using it as a tool…and not letting it control us completely.