I am an active member of the BC Prime program (great program for a blogger wanting to learn how to make it big) which is a part of Blogging Concentrated from Dan Morris, and one of the things that he sent me was an email all about the Look Up campaign. The video moved me so much that I felt I had to jump and share it too along with my own two cents.
As you can tell from this video that, Look Up is all about taking the time to interact with the world right there around you instead of being consumed by your technology devices in your hands. I feel its solid advice that we really should spend more time following.
When I was growing up, I can remember not meeting a stranger and talking to everyone around me after I moved to SC. People took the time to know their neighbors. I knew everyone around me within an 18 mile radius due to riding my horse all around. My neighbors were outside and had no problem stopping to chat a few with me.
Knowing our Neighbors
Now when I take my kids around my neighborhood our bikes, I never see anyone outside. When I do, people are so afraid to get to know us. It’s like night and day when I think about the differences between my childhood and that of my kids.
I LIVED outside playing with our animals and my imaginary friends all throughout the woods and dirt roads around my home. Now my kids love the outdoors and playing in the trees too, but I CAN’T trust to let them go throughout the neighborhood alone. I literally fear what they will see and what could happen to them.
There have been literally been some major kidnapping events not even 45 minutes from my home. When I was growing up, that hardly ever happened. Even if it did, the neighbors knew who the kids belonged to. Now though, I literally couldn’t tell you my next door neighbor’s name. I miss having a neighborhood connection. Does it still exist around you? Do you know you’re neighbors well? Do you still sit on each other’s porches and share each other’s life stories?
I long for my kids to have that. I long for them to be able to interact with someone new without fear. Relationships could bloom from anywhere. When I try to do that now people think you’re crazy?
But yet, if we were to ‘meet’ online in some form, we’d be instant friends. Is it because when we’re online we can do complete background checks in an instant? Yet in reality a person’s character is really learned by getting to know them in person.
The Parks Are to Quiet
I literally have to drive over an hour to find a kid’s park filled with kids. The kids roam and play and make new friends with complete ease. Yet, all around the parents are glued to their iPhones and tablets. If they aren’t, they don’t want to talk to other moms. (No, it’s not just me. I have sat back and done loads of observation.) I yearn to have a connection with women in my community. I know I’m not alone. I’ve read online that other mom’s are in the same boat. Are we to afraid to make friendships?
We are becoming a nation where we don’t socialize in person with others. Our interactions have become less real. When we do interact with other’s we keep them at a distance.
I’m in the midst of reading the book I’ll Be Seeing You by Suzanne Hayes and Loretta Nyhan. This really awesome book is comprised of letters of two women who have husbands in the midst of the war. They build a connection that is mighty strong. Both of them are lonely and wanting companionship. They have friends in their lives, but it’s not the same.
Understanding the Online World
I truly understand having an online relationship that is close knit. I have my fair share of them. I do gain more of them everyday due to the blogging world. However, what about the relationships we aren’t growing due to the fact that we’re so glued to the online world.
I’m not saying that our entire society has turned against getting to know others in person, but it is happening all around us. We need to take the time to shut down all technology and spend time with our family. We will not always have those moments to do that.
This summer I encourage you to take your kids to your local park. Instead of only letting your kids create those lasting friendships take some time to get to know the other parents around you. Talk to the person behind you in the line while you’re waiting. Get to know the people you meet in the library. There are so many places we can start a friendship.
Do you make time for your family without technology?