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10 Skills We've Lost Due to Smart Phones and PDAs and Simple Ways to Get Those Skills Back
1. Memorizing phone numbers
It was a hassle remembering numbers. Now we simply add them to our contacts list. That usually works well unless our device is lost, stolen, or damaged. No one can be expected to remember all their contact numbers. What we can do is memorize 5 of our most important contact numbers. This should include a mixture of family, friends and business. If you’re really ambitious you can memorize 5 contacts for each category.It was a hassle remembering numbers. Now we simply add them to our contacts list. That usually works well unless our device is lost, stolen, or damaged. No one can be expected to remember all their contact numbers. What we can do is memorize 5 of our most important contact numbers. This should include a mixture of family, friends and business. If you’re really ambitious you can memorize 5 contacts for each category.
2. Map reading skills
The convenience and effectiveness of GPS guidance systems and digital maps generated by search engines is undeniable. They’ve definitely made our lives easier. What we don’t get from using these devices and applications are the increased ability to understand spatial orientation, representative symbolism, and navigation. To renew or acquire those skills, try using physical maps to plan your next trek. Whether it’s a long or short trip, take time to stop and safely chart your progress. After a few excursions, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how efficient a tactile map can be.
Even amateur photography required a rudimentary learning curve about lighting, depth, and composition. This was true for analog and digital photography. Most smart phone camera’s automatically make these adjustments. We no longer have to learn the art of photography. On most devices, this is easily rectified by turning off the automatic settings. Experiment with manually setting the scene modes, lighting, and zoom. You just may learn that you’re a “true Photog.”
4. Fact checking
Reference books and encyclopedias were once the gold standard for finding reference information. They provided peer reviewed and fact checked data on a vast array of subjects. They just aren’t as convenient and rapidly updated as search engines, digital reference materials, and databases. That said, the results of information derived from digital sources aren’t always reliable. Their information is limited by the review process. No one wants to be embarrassed by regurgitating false information. It’s taken time, but most people now realize that wiki retrieved data comes with a caveat. To make certain you’re disseminating factual information, make an effort to strictly utilize reputable and reliable sources.
5. Reading comprehension
The primary culprits are E-readers. They’re convenient and can store thousands of books. There’s also evidence that their format makes it more difficult for users to retain and recall information they just read. Don’t worry, there’s no need to give up your e-reader! What we should do is make an effort to read printed books. This will be especially helpful when perusing information we need for academic or career purposes.
6. Hand written correspondence
Writing letters and notes incorporated hand writing skills, organizational skills, and learning about the person or persons you correspond with. This is another easily regained skill. Send a letter to an old friend, relative or acquaintance. If you’re truly feeling adventurous, join a pen pal club!
This one may seem counter-intuitive, especially considering how many people have smart phones, but it’s true! We actually use email and texts far more than we talk. It’s more prevalent among certain demographics, but it touches them all. The solution is self explanatory: take time make phone calls.
Using coins and paper money requires fast arithmetic and accurate calculations. Sure debit cards are often more practical, but cash has its benefits. In addition keeping our calculating skills sharp, cash can actually be safer to use than debit cards. Use cash for purchases under ten dollars. While ostensibly debit cards are safer, they’re are susceptible to fraudulent practices such as skimming. This often happens at locations where make quick, low dollar transactions. If you inadvertently lose a small amount of cash you’re not going to be too upset. On the hand, if your debit card is compromised it could become a true fiasco.
Distracted walking detracts from the observations and experience of walking. It can also be dangerous. Accidents can easily occur when we become immersed in text messages. An easy solution is to set observation goals for each trip. If it’s a routine walking commute, make a game of noting the changes, no matter how subtle, on your commute.
10. Expanding our knowledge base
The convenience of nearly instantaneous information can easily become a crutch. If we’re not knowledgeable about certain subjects such as physics, politics, or music we know we can look it up online. That’s not necessarily a negative. What’s problematic is that we often look up and recite the information, but don’t actually absorb it. It may seem daunting, but this is arguably the easiest skill to revitalize. Whenever you reference an unfamiliar subject take time to actually learn the information.
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