Smartphones are killing our skills
Have you noticed smartphones are killing our skills? For some, this doesn’t appear a problem but bear with me.
What if World War 3 started? Okay, I’ll try and be a little less dramatic! What if smartphone service went down? Plausible. What if we had a zombie apocalypse? Okay, sorry… there I go again.
My point is, what if at some point we needed our skills but did not have use of our smartphones? It’s okay kids. Once upon a time there was a world without smartphones. This very thought is making me a little nostalgic… but I’ll get back on track.
As a world, we are becoming so dependant on technology with just a handful of technology companies at the helm. Will there be a time when these companies control how and what we think? Will they control how we feel?
At this point you’re probably still reading because you think I have a point or you think I’m totally nuts and you want to see what kind of crazy BS I write next. Either is fine with me, as long as you’re still reading.
6 skills our smartphone kills
Here are 6 skills are smartphones are either replacing or damaging all together:
- Focus: Our attention spans are getting shorter. How long can you focus on a single task or project without being distracted by technology?
- Memory: Do you know your partner’s phone number? How many phone numbers can you recall? I remember a time when I had to dial a phone number each time I wanted to reach someone. It was tedious, however, I could recall several phone numbers easily.
- Navigation: When was the last time you had to read a paper map? Can you remember more than one turn or do you wait for the annoying navigator to announce your next direction change? Can you work out if you’re travelling north, south, east or west? (My older readers are probably nodding yes).
- Creativity: We have access to seemingly endless information online, however, what sets us apart as humans is our ability to think and process (not in the same way a computer processes). Information is not original. Creativity is.
- Knowledge: 60% of all news is fake. Okay, I’m just making that up -but the point is you would probably never know! The Internet is full of facts and figures but they’re not always true, however, that doesn’t stop people from filling their head with this misinformation. Misinformation is not making us smarter.
- Social skills: I’m going to get some arguments here. Social media is not socialising. I know it sounds crazy but it’s true. Retouched photos, selected information, fake persona’s, emoticons and text messages are not effective communication. We’re setting ourselves up for unrealistic expectations and misunderstandings in the real world. We’re missing body language, the sense of touch, tone of voice and those missed moments that can come from an awkward silence or a feeling of discomfort.
You probably don’t know it yet, however, one day you will thank me for pointing this out. There are so many realistic scenarios where you might not be able to rely on your smartphone.
Consider the possibility of a natural disaster, terrorist attack, an act of war, poor weather, flat batteries, being separated from your smartphone (sounds far fetched but it’s true!) and power outages (not just for your phone but also the towers, servers etc. your phone depends on).
Plus there’s so much we’re missing by being glued to our smartphone. Smartphones stimulate 2 senses; sight and sound. We’re missing the senses of touch, taste and smell when we’re on our phones. We’re missing body language, tone of voice, familiar scents and the experience of sharing food, for example.
I’m not anti-technology. I have and use a smartphone but I know there’s more to life. Switch your phone off for a short while today. Maybe even test yourself on a few of the skills I have mentioned above without reaching for the phone. Test yourself, no cheating.