Unplug the technology

Do you remember the smell of rain on the dry ground as you would run back home to take cover or the perpetually scraped knees from all the jumping around and falling down? Do you remember going over to your grandparents’ home and your grandfather showing you butterflies in the garden? Do you remember chasing those butterflies or the dragonflies whom you innocently called ‘helicopters’. Every person who was born in early 90s would be familiar with the idea of such a childhood, the age of innocence, the age of sweat and dirt, the age of sliding on grass and climbing mango trees. When I see the children today, especially the ones living in mega-cities I feel sad for them for they would not have a childhood like ours. I see a toddler playing with a smartphone, or a adolescent spending time over internet. That is all that remains of their childhood; they are alienated from nature and are blissfully ignorant of the things they are missing out.
This is the age of technology, when a new gadget comes in everyday and a gadget which was a hit yesterday is a passe today. In this age of rapidity we don’t need to step out of our home for anything, everything is available at the touch of button. Look at the young people these days, eyes set on the phone screens and thumbs furiously texting. I don’t need to enlist the harmful effects of technology and internet on individuals and society alike. It seems like the more advanced our technology becomes, the more likely we are to withdraw from the real world. The intimacy of conversation and the integrity of relationships are compromised by quick and cold forms of communication. A new disorder is doing the rounds in the urban landscape these days – ‘Internet use disorder’ due to spending more than nine hours with the computers and smartphones, says a research. The much famous Facebook has innumerable harmful effects on a person; no one can deny the urge to stay updated and to keep updating about things. It increases the pressure to be popular and gives us an illusion of being among friends while in reality we are getting lonelier by the day. Technology sure has linked us up in ways we never imagined but it comes at a cost and those are major psychological pitfalls to the constant connectivity that’s become a way of life. Internet is the idiot box of our generation, it shuts out the imagination of an individual by occupying his mind in mindless activities and entertainment. If asked to, many people would find it absurd and unable to switch off their computers, phones, plug off their iPods and read a book or write a letter or go for a walk. Beyond addiction and short attention spans, it also leads to other mental disorders like depression, sleep disorders and stress.
But things are always easier said than done. While everyone is aware of the harms of technology, few have made feeble attempts to give up on it at times. Honestly, in today’s world it is a necessity and one can’t do without it. Instead, one can always take small breaks from all of it. Some people have already started keeping a check on their interaction with technology on a daily basis while others take a day off from technology. Researches have shown that we need break from technology to recharge and refresh our minds for the next day and restricting the use of gadgets is a pretty smart move. Some people have started opting to go on vacations in the lap of nature, shutting off even cellphones for a week or so and revitalizing their body.
It is not easy to start with but a little determination can take you places. Deactivate your Facebook and Twitter and you’ll be amazed at the amount of spare time you have in which you can read a book or draw or do things you had been putting off due to lack of time. Bake a cake or ride down in your cycle which has been gathering dust over the last couple of years. Talk to your parents, take them out for lunch, they would be really happy to see their child off the phone for a while. Learn to talk to the people around you rather than ignoring them by digging in your phones, real, healthy communication with people will eradicate your feeling of loneliness and make you a happier person and also a more active one. The idea is very simple – our lives get busier with time with increasing work and responsibilities so why don’t we take time off which we can and enjoy things we have been craving for a while.

Abhyuday Gupta

Dreamer. Achiever.

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