This week, I have seen the same scenario at least 3 times. I see groups of young people walking beside each other, yet they are not walking together. Instead of engaging in conversation, their eyes are cast downward and focusing on their mobile phones. Or, they pop a set of earbuds in to avoid interaction.
And it saddens me when I see them occupying the same space but not sharing their lives with each other. I remember walking home with my friends in middle school and having the craziest conversations. A few years later in high school, we would have three-way phone conversations for hours and chat about everything and nothing simultaneously. As a woman in my late 20s, these nostalgic moments are not too far in the past.
And, as technology pushes forward at an insane pace, both young and old people are hooked on social media, yet they are unable to socialize. Hearing the cadence of a person’s voice has been replaced by quick texts and DMs on Twitter. Girls walking and giggling in the mall on a Saturday night has turned into a group of people indulging in their own tech worlds. People having dinner at a restaurant can barely order their food or share stories with others because they are trying to keep up with their Facebook timeline.
Do I like social media? Absolutely. As a freelance writer and blogger, it is a vital source to my success. But, I also love handwritten letters, laughs on the telephone, and sitting back on the couch and letting topics of discussion ebb and flow any way they please. Is there a true balance between being a social media junkie and a true social butterfly? I think so.
So why do I see a lack of balance between both worlds?