Relearning to be disconnected


Image courtesy UNPLUG: The Painting

I’ve always had high respect towards people who, with few words, manage to encompass profound meanings. And it’s even better when it’s in 140 characters.

I encountered, last week, a very thought provoking tweet by @alaindebotton :

We have become such experts at being always in touch, informed, connected. Now must relearn how to be silent, disconnected, alone.

I’m the first one to confess, I’m an Internetaholic. I spend hours daily, surfing the web and social Networking. I learned through the web what I had no idea even existed. That’s the beauty of Serendipity often brought up by famous blogger Chris Brogan. And yet, at the end of the day, I feel that indeed only 20% of what I encountered added value to my knowledge portfolio. The 80% left?  Basically Noise. Still I can’t bring myself to focus on the 20%. For one, it’s not that easy to recognize the information’s Eldorado. For two, there is this constant fear of missing something along the way.

It has become so essential for us to stay connected and up-to-date that we are starting to lose the ability to be silent, to shut ourselves from the world for a while, meditate, and let the information we receive all day settle.

I have been struggling with this for a while now, and it only worsened when I joined the Twitter community. Too many great links, never enough time to check them all. I’m getting better at dealing with it though, using a 3 simple words mantra: “It doesn’t matter!”

Yes, it doesn’t matter if you miss a great article or two, it doesn’t matter that your GReader displays +1000 unread posts, and it doesn’t matter that you weren’t there when Gmail’s latest feature got announced on twitter, it doesn’t matter that you can’t keep up on a geeky conversation because you didn’t follow @Scobleizer ‘s twitter stream the day before…

Relax, take a day Off technology. Turn off your laptop and your phone and just go outside, take a walk. Meet real people, have real conversations, use a pen and paper, and take an hour to scribble down what you’ve learned all day, digest it and rewrite it your own way. Let your mind whirl in a disconnected realm, you’ll be surprised what you’ll discover…

Lamia Ben


2 thoughts on “Relearning to be disconnected

  1. Welcome back to the real ! Think about minimalism. Think about what really important to you, you’ll conclude that a lot of this noise doesn’t matter and you don’t really care about it. Then you can simply remove it, avoid it and go ahead !

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