Last month’s focus on technology was interesting because I didn’t realize the impact of technology in the details of my life. I didn’t realize how out of balance I truly was regarding my use of technology and my need for almost constant access and information.
I certainly don’t think technology is evil. I love the relationships, the access to information and the freedom to share thoughts and ideas. Yet, I also realize the need to master or be mastered by technology and its incessant call. I understand that I must refuse to follow the crowd and instead choose my own focus. In doing so, I can overcome information overload by focusing on creating balance.
Laying Down the Gauntlet
Just like overload looks different on every person, so does a balanced solution for overload. In Managing Overload with Boundaries, we discussed basic principles as a guide in creating a plan for awareness, prevention and management of overload.
In today’s post, I am issuing a challenge, playing off our focus last month on technology and playing into this month’s focus on balance.
The challenge is this: Decide one way you can begin to become the master over technology in your life rather than a slave to it. Think of some change you can make that clearly says, “I refuse to follow the crowd and will decide for myself how to use technology & how to manage the information it constantly presents.”
To help, let’s look at examples of others working to create balance in their lives:
- The post Island Time by Chris Peak at Trail Reflections suggests that operating occasionally on island time can transform your life, especially if you’re living with a maxed-out schedule.
- Chris Peek also wrote the book Blaze Your Own Trail, a terrific resource to help you make crucial decisions in your life regarding your calling, spontaneity, personality, and much more… all areas significantly impacted by technology and information overload.
- Dan Erickson, a friend and frequent commentor on this blog, decided to cancel his internet service for the summer. You can read about that decision in the comments for the post Solving the Problem of Information Overload and Managing Overload with Boundaries.
- CEO Brian Moran decided to “cut the cord” one Friday by putting his smartphone, tablet device and laptop in his desk drawer for the day. You can read the lessons he learned from this experiment in 5 Things I Learned by Turning Off My Smartphone for 24 Hours.
- The McMillan Family made an even more drastic move. Read about it in This Family Banned All Technology Made after 1986.
These examples and suggestions hopefully serve to get your creative juices flowing as well as to inspire and motivate.
Choose to Think
With the gauntlet laid down, consider this quote from Rick Dawson of Planned Peasanthood, someone who always hits home with truth…
“God gave us the ability to think – we have to choose to do so, on a minute by minute basis sometimes, if we don’t want to be overwhelmed by the ‘drinking from the firehose’ condition of living in an always on, 24/7/365 world. In its own way? It can set us up for the same sort of response that primitive man had – always afraid, always on guard.”
Choose to get grounded with God, and let Him prioritize your day. Trust God to get you the information and connections you need instead of obsessing over the constant inflow from technology. Find YOUR balance by choosing to think based on the guiding and directing of the Holy Spirit.
While I see the convenience of technology, I simply cannot shake the fact that it never satisfies my deep need for connection. And for that reason, I choose today to pick up the gauntlet.
DISCUSSION: Will you pick up the gauntlet too? If so, how?