By: Kaleah Walterman
Every time we go out to eat dinner, or meet someone at a coffee shop, almost always we see people on their phones instead of being engaged with other people in conversations. In my personal experience, I would be in the middle of a conversation with someone and the person I am having a conversation with whips out their phone to text another person. Or I’m eating dinner with my family and one of my family member’s has their phone out checking social media and is completely isolating themselves from the rest of the family. I am also guilty of being on my phone while being in a group conversation, and even though I’m surrounded by friends and family, I am completely isolated and alone in my own virtual world.
Constantly being on our phones and not engaging in conversations shows disrespect to the other person and the relationship suffers. The other day, I was at a restaurant and a couple was eating together. But the woman was looking at his phone the entire time while the man was focused on his food, and the woman was isolating herself from him. Or when students have their phones out during class checking texts and social media, they are isolating themselves from the teacher and what is being taught, therefore could suffer in school. In my symphony, a player will constantly be on their phone when they are not playing, isolating themselves from the music.
Having face-to-face conversations is very important to have in order for relationships to grow and flourish. It also teaches how to communicate effectively. Even though people are connected on social media, there is more that goes into a conversation than just words; there are gestures, body language, and eye contact that makes face-to-face conversations very important to have.
The ideology behind social media and technology is that it’s supposed to connect us, but in reality, I use my social networking to read random posts, see pictures, and to watch random videos for my enjoyment, not to connect with others. I very rarely use social media to connect with others. Below is a great video, a TEDTalk on how social media and our phones is ruining our communication with others.