… did Instant Messager kill the telephone conversation? And did Facebook kill the lunch date? And did texting kill the written note?
My quest to be more with less has spilled over into social media. There was a time that I chatted with friends and family on the phone daily. There was a time that lunch or meeting for a glass of wine to catch up was a normal, weekly occurrence. It seems that in recent years these personal forms of communication have been reduced to quick “how are you” via instant messenger. Lunch dates with a friend to catch up have been replaced with a peek at their Facebook page and a quick post to their wall. A paper invitation to a party has been replaced by an impersonal text message. A phone call with a family member has been replaced with a short, poorly composed e-mail.
While social media can be an absolute God-send to the busy schedule, it can also be stifling to a relationship. We are human beings with mouths, ears, hands and eyes. These are meant to be used together to communicate, not just one or the other.
While I know my life has changed since the carefree days of my 20’s when work was not as much a priority and I was not married, I am still the same girl. Why should I be communicating in such a drastically different way. Has all this technology made me a more complete, whole person? I suspect it has not.
What can I do about this? I can sign out of instant messenger and pick up the telephone. I can remove family members from Facebook and encourage them to phone. I can send a paper invitation for brunch rather than a text. I can bring back Wednesday dinner dates and Saturday lunch.
I can ask you to hold me accountable. Call me. I’ll answer. Write me a letter. I’ll respond.
I challenge you to consider how you communicate today vs. 10 years ago. Do you feel whole, satisfied and complete with your social media communications? If so, right on! If not, join me. Let’s do lunch.