New Age Technology

Disconnected yet reconnected. This is how I feel right now. My cell phone has been out of commission for over three weeks. It hasn’t been easy to live without my phone but it has been an eye-opening experience. Here are five things that this new age technology have reminded me of:

1.       Good versus Best. Being released of the clutter of life that comes from constant phone calls, responding to emails throughout the day, continuous social media posting and reviewing, etc has allowed me to focus on some of the more important things in life. I’m getting back to the basics. Note that the things listed above are not bad. In fact, in many respects, I think they’re good. However, being released from the clutter helps to re-direct us towards the best that life has to offer.    

2.       Respect. Boundaries DO exist.  “Me” time. Spiritual time. Meditation. Family time. Work obligations. Scheduled activities. Vacation. There's a time and place for everything. Although cell phones are convenient because they minimize our limitations to access others, cell phones do not create an inherent right for people to disrespect the time and boundaries of others. Everyone’s priorities and boundaries are different. Respect differences and accept that others may not always be available to you.

3.       Preparation. “Improper planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part.” So no, I will not be able to respond to your need in less than 24 hours of your request. No, I will not work late in the evening or early in the morning to address your last minute request. No, I will not inconvenience myself because of your failure to plan. I will no longer allow others to devalue my time through usage of my cell phone to make a last minute request. Prepare in advance and together we will get the job done!

4.       Steadfastness. Where there’s a will, there’s a way. One of my life mottos is that we find a way to accomplish the things we truly want to accomplish. Regardless of whether you have a time conflict, a financial conflict, a relational conflict, or some other conflict, I believe you will find a way to accomplish the things and make time for the people that matter the most to you. In spite of not having a phone, I have still been able to get my daughters to their activities, attend all of my work obligations, and participate in my ministry and sorority events.

5.       Resourcefulness. Cell phones, office phones, home phones, email, google chat, facebook messenger, snail mail, groupme and white boards. Cell phones provide very easy access to people. However, they are not the only means of communication. When my cell phone failed, we simply found alternative ways to communicate. Were the alternatives ideal? Not really, but they accomplished the goal. Communication should not always be dependent upon convenience. Be flexible. Tapping into all of your resources will always produce fruitfulness.
I know that I am missing out on some good things without my cell phone. However, I am in no rush to return to the rat race that I have been stuck in for longer than I can remember. Life is precious and I have been allowing it to pass me by. My cell phone has had me un-focused and not at my best. I am returning to my best and I realize that not everything I’ve done or everyone whom I have come into contact with be able to continue this life journey with me.  I’m completely okay with that!

Spend some time in self-reflection. If you did not have a cell phone, what would your life be like?

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