We are in quite an age of information and technology and this is molding our lifestyles as well as the focus of our future generations. Yet is it always for the best? We have smart phones, smart cars, and all kinds of gadgets to help us be efficient so we don’t have to waste time on things like finding people, parallel parking, searching for information or directions. Now we have technology that can do those things for us on command. This saves us time and allows us to multitask but what are we doing with this extra time? Are we just rushing to keep up with our other gadgets or updating our hundreds of friends on our interesting activities?
It appears, and some studies have even shown, that we and more-so the generation of Millennials are actually doing and creating less than generations did before this age of technology and social networking. People are very focused on success through networking rather than accomplishments. An expert from the Harvard Innovation Labs commented that people are less interested in Mastery than in Serial Dabbling. They rush to be productive without understanding the purpose for the tasks at hand. It also seems that these days it is all about “who you know” than “what you know”. We’ve all gotten caught up in this popularity contest lifestyle and the immediate gratification of social networking. However, how will this affect us in the long run?
If we are all using our extra time for multitasking to just absorb lots of information and pass it around to everyone we know then when do we make time for innovation and creating new information? The past successes of our nation were based on our creativity, new ideas, and encouraging out of the box thinking. Is this change part of why the U.S. is now struggling in the new global economy? If everyone is more worried about getting their talents recognized rather than developing them then we will have fewer experts and masters to lead our future generations. I hope we can find a balance. In my opinion, this will begin with how we raise and educate our children. They will not be as fascinated with the newness of social media and technology as they will have been raised with it. So hopefully they can incorporate it into their lives without being engulfed by it. We need to foster their creativity, give them down time, and teach them the importance of Mastery. “Children have to be educated, but they also have to be left to educate themselves”, Ernest Dimnet.