Standing in the grocery line. Boring.
Waiting for an elevator. Boring.
Riding public transportation. Boring.
Waiting rooms. Boring.
Wait. Did I say, Disneyland?
I did. I mean, what other logical conclusion could I come to after spending three days in the happiest place on Earth? A place that has been ENGINEERED to delight the senses?
Because all I saw were people, necks bent, immersed in their screen.
Regardless of whether you hold a season pass and are a local, or have crossed continents to get there, a trip to Disneyland is a financial feat. You’ve shelled out a fair amount of cash and precious vacation time to be there with your beloved offspring…perhaps you could PEEL YOURSELF AWAY FROM YOUR PHONE for a few minutes?
That tiny screen is still pumping out the same stuff…why drag yourself out of your basement and into the bright California sunshine if you’re still going to live and die by that tiny screen?
Do I sound like a judgmental hag?
Because at Disneyland, I saw a child riding in a stroller…watching a movie on an iPad.
I think we’re taking our FOMO, our discomfort with boredom, and screens-as-a-babysitter too far.
A big topic of conversation around these parts has been the startling information that has emerged about social media and tech usage among young children. The bullying. The pornography. The staggering amount of time they spend on it. The way it’s diminishing the social development and mental health of our children.
And yet. As adults, we’re doing a terrible job at showing our kids that there are more important things in life than that little screen.
I saw so many families seemingly completely disconnected from each other, all engrossed in their personal screen, shuffling along in line, walking through the park, as they ate, always staring at that tiny, addictive screen.
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WHILE DISNEYLAND MAGIC LITERALLY SWIRLED AROUND THEM.
Golden opportunities to connect with their kids, completely missed because they had to play Candy Crush, or cruise through Instagram.
I find my phone and social media platforms to be a TREMENDOUS source of inspiration and value. I do. But I can’t actually ACT on any of that inspiration if I DON’T GET OFF MY PHONE.
I also absolutely treasure the photos of moments I’m able to capture on the fly because my camera is handily located in my phone.
So I get it. The chance to capture moments and communicate is super useful. That little screen is compelling.
But not as compelling as my kids.
Or whatever the heck you’re posting on Facebook that day.
That can wait until I get back.
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