Day 15: Technology

Ah, the double-edged sword that is technology. Although it’s quite difficult to not be grateful for everything that technology provides for us. I’m lumping in basically everything that makes life convenient. Hello, microwave.

No matter how old I feel on the inside, I know it would be an interesting transition to not live without those devices we might forget about or take for granted. Only when I don’t have a Keurig by my side do I miss it so much. Or even thinking about not having an iPhone and spending years with a slide-out keyboard. Even mentioning these things feels almost silly to admit, but I can’t deny that I enjoy little things that make life so much easier.

But not always easier. Too often it can feel like technology overcomplicates things, especially when it comes to how we live our lives and communicate with others. While I’m so grateful to have text messaging and websites and apps that allow me to easily keep in touch with people, it can make me very lazy in actually trying to see people face-to-face. It’s practically a crutch, getting the satisfaction of talking with others but forgetting to appreciate how nice it is to spend time with others without technology.

The thing with technology is that once you have a new gadget in your life, you can’t imagine existing without it. We attach ourselves to these conveniences to the point where it can sometimes be unhealthy. Drawing the fine line of where that point is can be the trickiest part.

We’re in an age where technology is booming, everything advancing too fast to even keep up with. I’m in a class reading science fiction right now, and we can’t help but notice how soon those stories of futuristic technology may soon, or already have, come into fruition. And it’s certainly not slowing down any time. I can’t even imagine what a few years from now will look like.

Yes, technology is a double-edged sword, but I am grateful for the edge that does good. We’re now connected to each other and the world now more than ever. We have endless information at our disposal, always learning and finding new things. It doesn’t help to look backward, unless it’s to see how far we’ve come. I wouldn’t even be here writing this post if it wasn’t for having my own laptop or place to type or where to share it with the world effectively.

When I see technology advancing, I see it as the world getting smarter. That we’ve found a medium where our minds can continue to expand and create new products and make new discoveries. We have the potential to do so much; how we use it, however, is even more difficult to predict.

Living in the first-world country that we do, we are beyond lucky. I believe that if we have the technology that can do every little thing for us, it’s only fair that we also use technology to help others. Especially when it comes to the technology that is basic or can save lives. Maybe adding resources to schools or providing ways to purify water sources.

When everything moves so fast, sometimes we just need to slow down and really evaluate what we’re doing and who it is affecting. Who is making your technology? How are their lives? How are their working conditions? Chances are, they aren’t as fortunate as you. What products and materials are going into our technology? What consequences does making and using technology have on our world, the environment and the people in it?

Of course gratitude is time to give thanks, but it’s also a time to think of how others can also express gratitude. I want to be grateful for the fact that what I do in my life doesn’t harm others in the process. While some areas of technology step up to that plate, others certainly do not. I ultimately want to be grateful for things that I can truly stand behind and know I’m doing the best I can for myself and the world.

And if I do have the technology, I want to appreciate it for what it is and not overstep the reality. I thank technology for making tasks simpler. But I don’t want to lose my mindfulness in the process knowing certain things will always be done for me without much work on my end. Maybe to appreciate technology more, we go time without it. We see the other side of the equation. We understand the role technology plays in life.

Technically, I and many other people wouldn’t have much of a future career-wise without technology. We can never go back to how it once was. I mean, think of having to dial-up internet again. No, thanks. But we can still turn our eyes away from the screen, our fingers away from the button, and appreciate the things that technology cannot make easier. That people cannot design and build. When it comes to a consumer capitalist society always looking for more, maybe the only software update we need is a change in attitude.

Take care, and keep the faith. -Allie

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