By Ibby Smith Stofer
In the days before we all became consumed with instant everything, was your life better or worse? Did you feel that you had more time in the day to enjoy things? Did you have the luxury of calling or speaking with others when either of you wanted to and not when the text or instant message landed on your phone, tablet, or computer?
Did you know that the worldwide use of email grew by 28% in the year 2014? It is expected to grow by over 50% by the end of 2017. Consumer email made up over 75% of the volume back in 2013 with nearly 3 million emails sent. Business has adopted email communication and is expected to grow by around 24% annually through 2017. There are over 100 billion business emails sent in the business environment each and every day.
The instant messaging has shown a slower growth rate due to alternate forms of communication. Worldwide Instant Messaging (IM) accounts totaled approximately 2.9 billion.
Lest we forget the social media sites that also consume our time on an often daily or sometimes hourly basis. With Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram or LinkedIn, one can have nearly immediate updates from friends, family, or business contacts.
I still prefer the old fashioned ways, although I admit I have multiple email accounts as well as social media accounts, and I use IM with family on occasion. I tried to track the amount of time I spend on these each day and found that it is hardly a wonder that at the end of each day, I am tired, and I have not had a lot of telephone or person-to-person contact.
I worry about the thumbing generation. They are consumed with the IM, texting and social media posts almost to the exclusion of personal contact. With our healthcare also converting to these communication forms, will we totally lose the warmth and joy of reaching out and touching someone, or hearing the tone in their voices?
What are your thoughts on how to take back our time, preserve relationships, and move away from the technology of instant everything?