How can a society that exists on instant mashed potatoes, packaged cake mixes, frozen dinners, and instant cameras teach patience to its young? -Paul Sweeney
I came across this quote today and it made me stop and think of how impatient we have become.
Years ago, it took time to prepare a nutritious evening meal. Sometimes it took most of the day to shop and prepare the vegetables and the meat. Now you can buy it all frozen in a bag, throw it in a fry pan and have a meal in under ten minutes. This is great for single moms or dads or single people who don’t want to (or don’t have time to) prepare a meal for themselves, but just how did we get to be so busy? Why do we feel the need to pack our lives with so many activities? What happened to all the free time we were supposed to have with our new labour saving devices?
The computer was supposed to free us from paperwork, but now people expect an immediate response to any email they send. An acquaintance of mine sent me an email Monday night at l:00 am and then called me at 8:00 pm Tuesday night demanding to know why I hadn’t responded to it.
Years ago no one would wonder or worry if a person didn’t respond right away. We knew that things take time. It used to be that you wrote a letter to someone and waited a few weeks for the reply.
And take telephones. A phone used to be a convenience. Something wonderous that allowed you to make a connection with relatives and friends. Everyone wanted one, and now everyone has one. But instead of a convenience, they have become our masters. Our phone rings and we feel we MUST answer it. If someone leaves you a phone message, they want you to call right back. People have forgotten that a phone and an answering machine are conveniences and allow a person to know who to call back IF they want to and/or have the time. It is not a demand.
Cell phones are held by pre-teens to seniors and people are seen seemingly talking to themselves walking down the street. People are multi-tasking, using their cell phones as they drive instead of paying careful attention to what they are doing. No wonder so many accidents happen.
Technology has improved our lives in many ways, but it has also been damaging to many. Take, for instance, farmers. Years ago there were crews of farm labourers who would go form farm to farm cutting and baling hay and then putting it in the barns. There was always a willing boy or two or three to work for a few days. Now farmers are forced to buy expensive equipment so that they can do everything themselves – cut, bale and load, or they simply give up farming.
Much of our good farm land is being sold to developers who offer the farm a million dollars for his property. The farmer knows that he will never make that much in a lifetime of farming and the deal is made, but that’s a whole other issue.
We no longer give our full attention to what we are doing at the moment. We no longer live in the present. We live for the future, the what will be or what we want. For years we’ve heard people say that we have to “stop and smell the roses” and we stop for 3 seconds, smell them and keep going. We don’t get the full message, the real message, which is STOP! Stop running, stop talking, stop doing and just be for a few minutes or a few hours, maybe even for a whole day or a weekend.
It’s time to take back control of our lives. To choose what is necessary to our well-being. Not what we think we want, but what we really need. We may find it is much less than what we already have.
Fran Watson has been involved in Internet Marketing for the past 7 years. She has learned a lot about what doesn't work and is now learning about what does work. Check out her latest webpages: http://www.franwatson.ca/dogtraining and http://www.franwatson.ca/Dating Learn along with her by signing up for her free ezine at firstname.lastname@example.org