These days, the name of the game is unplugging and finding time for yourself. Certainly, solitude is good at times and can help you sort through your deep thoughts, but this obsession with unplugging has gotten out of hand. The number of times I’ve heard or read about how unplugging can save/change your life just makes it seem to be the most recent fad people are following on their never-ending pursuit of happiness.
Don’t get me wrong – I definitely have days when all I want to do is turn off my phone and not interact with anybody, but that’s my way of disconnecting from people, not from devices. In fact, my devices (phone, laptop, iPod, etc.) tend to give me an escape from people.
But when I’m not getting away from people, I’m usually so glued to my phone because I’m connecting with other people. We’ve all been in a situation where we’re around certain people we don’t want to be around so we take solace in our phone screens. The mandatory family 3ozouma, for example, where you’re asked generic questions about your studies/job, to which you respond with generic responses about how, elhamdollah, everything is great. You would rather be out with your friends but your mother would kill you for leaving, so you keep up with the outside world through your phone.
My point is, people don’t seem to pay any attention to the reasons why we’re so plugged in to begin with. So let me take a moment to explain my personal reasons and hope that you’ll realize that unplugging isn’t quite all it’s trumped up to be.
I listen to music with my earphones because it’s far more enjoyable than listening to the sound of cars honking and people cursing at each other in the streets. I text because better opportunities have taken my friends to entirely different continents and I don’t have the luxury of grabbing a coffee with them on a daily basis. I check my phone regularly because the world has become too fast-paced for me to afford disconnecting for even half a day. I watch movies and shows on my laptop instead of turning on the television because I can’t stand to watch another TV host/presenter shoving backwards opinions and misinformation down the already disillusioned population’s throat.
The world we live in really sucks sometimes and plugging in is how some of us stay sane. Yes, I agree that it’s not ideal for us to live our lives virtually but I will disconnect when there is something worth disconnecting for.