No Time To Think – People are always “too busy”

In family friends, websites by Michael Michelini10 Comments

Traveling a lot these days has made me wonder…are people less bored these days then in the past. Do people fill the time more now that there are so many “in-between” gadgets and toys to keep us from twiddling our thumbs:

Online chat – MSN, skype, google talk, QQ
Mobile phones – texting , talking on the phone, playing video games, surfing the web
Social media – facebook, twitter, linkedin, etc
Portable video games – sony PSP
Listening to music – ipod, iphone, mp3 player

I mean, how many people do you see reading a book! We are cramming our days with new “filler”, but is this improving our quality of life? Is it assisting the advancement of society! Even my blogging, right now I am writing this while I am in a bus stuck in traffic coming back to Shenzhen from Hong Kong. Is this blog entry going to add value in my life, and in others lives?

What did we do before we had all these high tech gadgets:

1) read a book
2) talk to a neighbor beside us on the train
4) write things down – ON PAPER

For those times we just sit and stare…..what is this – is this a waste of time? Waste of productivity? Or is it a way to destress. A way to sit back, reflect on our days, on our lives, and prioritize what it is we want with our lives…..

I really do try to stop using the net, music, twitter, facebook and others sometimes – just to hear my own mind THINK. To reflect on what it is I am doing and why. Am I just doing busy work that can be better done by someone else who specializes in it. Rather then my trying to learn to master everything ,and just keep on doing and doing and doing – I need to stop and think and reflect. Strategize….plan…….and win. I PREFER to write on a piece of paper sometimes….it just helps me think more clearly….cross things off, circle, write notes, put numbers next to one another. sure I know there is mindmap software – but I guess I’m a bit old fashioned and still appreciate seeing a physical piece of paper!

Then again, these technologies have allowed me to keep in contact with friends and family ALL OVER THE WORLD. As if they were in the room with me. Plus it helps me communicate to people whose english is not so good – they prefer chats as it allows them to read and write English – they are shy to speak it! So of course there are good things from all this internet and technology advancement, but i think it should still be used in moderation (for example I have 2 chat windows blinking on my laptop now….)

Anyway, just noticing people everywhere are in their own zone…..texting on phones, listening to music, playing on facebook – but I hope they take time to stop and think about the BIG PICTURE of life. We all have to remind ourselves to do this.

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  1. I still read… dammit… 1 book a month 🙂

    These “fillers” are causing some problems that were relevant long before I came to China. For one – instant gratification. Kids and I would argue a good many people of our generation suffered from an inability to undertake endeavors wherein their wasn’t an immediate return on their efforts – which is a problem when you consider the kind of time line most of the meaningful progress you make in life runs on.

    As my mother likes to say “everything in moderation!” I think theirs more wisdom to that adage every time I reconsider it 😉

    1. Author

      i book a month….while living in China, yea right!! haah

      “everything in moderation” – sounds like the chinese saying “mama lai” (slowly)

      But yea…..I have to sign off chats a lot to avoid distration….and almost this facebook blocked in China thing helps me control the amount of time i spend on it

  2. hhahaha,true !!!
    before I thought you were very realistic but not too much thougt, but now seemsto find you have a rich heart and also a true person ,hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha

    1. Author

      thanks Judy, thanks for commenting – wish more people commented instead of talkin to me in email or chats about the blog! haha, but i am really happy you like this……yes, I think too much……..

  3. That’s exactly what I am thinking.

    Not saying that it is all bad, as we need to fit it the society. But I actually see it quite a horrible picture of the world. All those “fillers” are changing our generations way too much, not really all in a positive way, I should say. It widen the distance between people. Some people even dont have to expose to the “real” world in order to survive. Though I belong to the post 80s, I personally feel sick seeing people “taking care” of their high-time gadgets all the time. All these just creatre too much so called “personal space”. The flooding of all these uses is somehow a disaster. =/

    1. Author

      Well for example I am responding to your comment from my mobile phone on a bus in china…….so, if I had to wait until I am in an office or a desktop computer it would take more time for me to see this comment, read it, and respond……plus it would be at least until tomorrow I will be able to do that…..

      I would be staring out the window of this bus, maybe even stressed because I cannot check emails and messages until 12 hours from now

      I guess its all about control….but yes many people are not experiencing reality lives anymore

  4. Some say “technology brings people together”.. and I find this statement interesting enough. Really, it can either shorten or widen the distance between ppl. It’s just there needs to be a limit line, and human’s desire in advancing life standard somehow leading them to somewhere not good for human nature.

    “…appreciate seeing a piece of physical paper.. =] I even miss the art of getting a hand-written letters!

    1. Author

      Hi Emily,

      Thanks for your thoughtful comment, it is true……how much people miss getting physical letters,
      I was in a marketing conference and one company was saying they are doing paper catalogs again because no one else is doing it anymore, therefore people read those catalogs they get now more then ever….

      Maybe soon enough we will revert back to the old school days, when people have had enough. Haha

      1. Actually there’re still many people sending snail mails over the ocean these days =D I’m also one of those in the large postcrossing discourse! Though I am not writing as much as I used to, I still write a letter or two from time to time.

        It’s interesting that we combine the old-fashioned communication tool with the great invention of internet to get things done. It’s a great way to build up one’s social network as well. =]

        1. Author

          WOW, there are still actual letters and cards being sent in the mail?!?!? My mom even gave up when they keep getting lost in the chinese mail system….

          I did read some internet marketing guys saying they try to collect physical mailing address to really drive home a good marketing message to their best users!

          maybe i should get my top comments (hint hint) mailing address and can mail a holiday card!

          thanks so much for your kind words and comments on the blog!

          to snail mail!

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