It’s 2015, and we live in a world where it’s easier than ever to stay connected to loved ones. However, because there are so many different ways to communicate, sometimes we actually communicate less than we did before we were bombarded with all this technology.
Think about it…
Flashback to the 70’s and 80’s. If you were alive then, you probably only had a landline, a typewriter and a box of stationery. We called friends on the landline, and returned calls if we had an answering machine that recorded voicemail messages. If someone lived at a distance, we wrote them a chatty note or a long letter. We made lunch dates, dinner dates, dates for Sunday brunch…and sometimes if we didn’t have a date, we’d go hang out at the discos until we found one!
It’s not that we don’t do those same things today— although it’s pretty rare to send (or receive) a handwritten letter. But with all the ways we have to keep in touch with people, our brains are sometimes operating on circuit overload. Should I Facetime, Skype, Facebook, instant message, tweet, text, call or email?
Also, the method of communication that you value as intimate, someone else may perceive as cold and impersonal. For example, let’s say that you love to send text messages, but the person you’re contacting hates to receive them—preferring a phone call. This can hurt the relationship.
The thing is, with seemingly infinite ways to stay connected, it’s become easier to be in touch with more people than we ever thought possible. So now that we have a few hundred “personal” friends, whom do we really wish to be close to, and how do we create boundaries with those with whom we’d like a bit more distance? If we do not create boundaries, then we don’t have the time to focus on the relationships where there is genuine closeness and intimacy. We’re close to everyone, at once, and everyone is close to us.
by Geri Jewell