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This Ad Shows Us The Detrimental Effects Of Phone Addiction

This Ad Shows Us The Detrimental Effects Of Phone Addiction

If I were to make a bet on how you’re reading this article, I would bet you’re on your phone. Wait, don’t put it away just yet. Unless your kids are around. Then by all means, bookmark this article and come back to it when they’re sleeping.

If you laughed at that, good. I was trying to find humor in what is a very serious topic. The truth is, our phones are tearing us away from making any sort of real connection with other individuals throughout many times in our lives. It’s one thing to take your phone out while waiting for the subway, but it’s another to be so attached to it that you miss out on the big things in life. Even missing out on the little things adds up over time.

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Ogilvy & Mather China has put together an advertising campaign titled “Phone Wall” which visualizes the symbolic barriers we put up in our lives when we become too connected to the Internet and our phones.

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1

    Is that an explosion on the father’s screen? Is he watching YouTube? What could possibly be so entertaining that it’s worth missing out on the project his son is working on? While the father is busy letting a video do all the entertaining, his son is using his imagination to create his own entertainment. Of course, it’s only a matter of time before the child realizes he can sit back and let an electronic box do all the work for him, and the cycle will unfortunately continue.

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    2

      This is a similar situation, but the body language exhibited by mother and daughter is in much greater contrast. The mother seems quite content browsing the web for a new pair of shoes while sipping her coffee, but the daughter definitely looks as if something’s missing in her life. Look: She has a bunch of toys and dolls to play with (and that’s just what’s in front of her), yet she seems so disillusioned that she’s ignoring the pile of stuffed animals on the ground, presumably waiting for something better to come along. Perhaps if her mother would pay some attention to her and push her imagination to its limits, the young girl would find some joy in her life.

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      3

        Do these two even like each other? It’s incredibly hard to tell. The husband seems pretty bothered by the fact that his wife would rather stay up talking to her friends while laying in bed than, you know, actually pay attention to the person she presumably loves. They could, at the very least, watch videos or read together using the same phone. But even that seems like it’d be too much to ask. Sadly enough, you just know that if she were to put her phone away and actually pay attention to her husband, she’d be distracted by dings and vibrations every couple of minutes. If she’s so intent on communicating with her friends, why don’t they just all get together instead of wasting time staring at a screen?

        Implications

        The implications to cell phone addiction are pretty obvious. Now, let’s take a moment and realize that children as young as 8 years old are spending an average of 8 hours a day interacting with some type of electronic media. Your average teenager sends over 3,000 texts a month. You’d almost rather they pick up the house phone and tie up the line having actual conversations! In all seriousness, children spend so much time with electronics because they’ve learned that it’s okay. They’ve learned that it’s simply the way of the world. If you want your children to put down their phones and actually live, you have to do so yourself.

        Featured photo credit: Flickr via farm5.staticflickr.com

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        Last Updated on May 21, 2019

        How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

        How to Communicate Effectively in Any Relationship

        For all our social media bravado, we live in a society where communication is seen less as an art, and more as a perfunctory exercise. We spend so much time with people, yet we struggle with how to meaningfully communicate.

        If you believe you have mastered effective communication, scan the list below and see whether you can see yourself in any of the examples:

        Example 1

        You are uncomfortable with a person’s actions or comments, and rather than telling the individual immediately, you sidestep the issue and attempt to move on as though the offending behavior or comment never happened.

        You move on with the relationship and develop a pattern of not addressing challenging situations. Before long, the person with whom you are in relationship will say or do something that pushes you over the top and predictably, you explode or withdraw completely from the relationship.

        In this example, hard-to-speak truths become never- expressed truths that turn into resentment and anger.

        Example 2

        You communicate from the head and without emotion. While what you communicate makes perfect sense to you, it comes across as cold because it lacks emotion.

        People do not understand what motivates you to say what you say, and without sharing your feelings and emotions, others experience you as rude, cold or aggressive.

        You will know this is a problem if people shy away from you, ignore your contributions in meetings or tell you your words hurt. You can also know you struggle in this area if you find yourself constantly apologizing for things you have said.

        Example 3

        You have an issue with one person, but you communicate your problem to an entirely different person.

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        The person in whom you confide lacks the authority to resolve the matter troubling you, and while you have vented and expressed frustration, the underlying challenge is unresolved.

        Example 4

        You grew up in a family with destructive communication habits and those habits play out in your current relationships.

        Because you have never stopped to ask why you communicate the way you do and whether your communication style still works, you may lack understanding of how your words impact others and how to implement positive change.

        If you find yourself in any of the situations described above, this article is for you.

        Communication can build or decimate worlds and it is important we get it right. Regardless of your professional aspirations or personal goals, you can improve your communication skills if you:

        • Understand your own communication style
        • Tailor your style depending on the needs of the audience
        • Communicate with precision and care
        • Be mindful of your delivery, timing and messenger

        1. Understand Your Communication Style

        To communicate effectively, you must understand the communication legacy passed down from our parents, grandparents or caregivers. Each of us grew up with spoken and unspoken rules about communication.

        In some families, direct communication is practiced and honored. In other families, family members are encouraged to shy away from difficult conversations. Some families appreciate open and frank dialogue and others do not. Other families practice silence about substantive matters, that is, they seldom or rarely broach difficult conversations at all.

        Before you can appreciate the nuance required in communication, it helps to know the familial patterns you grew up with.

        2. Learn Others Communication Styles

        Communicating effectively requires you to take a step back, assess the intended recipient of your communication and think through how the individual prefers to be communicated with. Once you know this, you can tailor your message in a way that increases the likelihood of being heard. This also prevents you from assuming the way you communicate with one group is appropriate or right for all groups or people.

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        If you are unsure how to determine the styles of the groups or persons with whom you are interacting, you can always ask them:

        “How do you prefer to receive information?”

        This approach requires listening, both to what the individuals say as well as what is unspoken. Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson noted that the best communicators are also great listeners.

        To communicate effectively from relationship to relationship and situation to situation, you must understand the communication needs of others.

        3. Exercise Precision and Care

        A recent engagement underscored for me the importance of exercising care when communicating.

        On a recent trip to Ohio, I decided to meet up with an old friend to go for a walk. As we strolled through the soccer park, my friend gently announced that he had something to talk about, he was upset with me. His introduction to the problem allowed me to mentally shift gears and prepare for the conversation.

        Shortly after introducing the shift in conversation, my friend asked me why I didn’t invite him to the launch party for my business. He lives in Ohio and I live in the D.C. area.

        I explained that the event snuck up on me, and I only started planning the invite list three weeks before the event. Due to the last-minute nature of the gathering, I opted to invite people in the DMV area versus my friends from outside the area – I didn’t want to be disrespectful by asking them to travel on such short notice.

        I also noted that I didn’t want to be disappointed if he and others declined to come to the event. So I played it safe in terms of inviting people who were local.

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        In the moment, I felt the conversation went very well. I also checked in with my friend a few days after our walk, affirmed my appreciation for his willingness to communicate his upset and our ability to work through it.

        The way this conversation unfolded exemplified effective communication. My friend approached me with grace and vulnerability. He approached me with a level of curiosity that didn’t put me on my heels — I was able to really listen to what he was saying, apologize for how my decision impacted him and vow that going forward, I would always ask rather than making decisions for him and others.

        Our relationship is intact, and I now have information that will help me become a better friend to him and others.

        4. Be Mindful of Delivery, Timing and Messenger

        Communicating effectively also requires thinking through the delivery of the message one intends to communicate as well as the appropriate time for the discussion.

        In an Entrepreneur.com column, VIP Contributor Deep Patel, noted that persons interested in communicating well need to master the art of timing. Patel noted,[1]

        “Great comedians, like all great communicators, are able to feel out their audience to determine when to move on to a new topic or when to reiterate an idea.”

        Communicating effectively also requires thoughtfulness about the messenger. A person prone to dramatic, angry outbursts should never be called upon to deliver constructive feedback, especially to people whom they do not know. The immediate aftermath of a mass shooting is not the ideal time to talk about the importance of the Second Amendment rights.

        Like everyone else, I must work to ensure my communication is layered with precision and care.

        It requires precision because words must be carefully tailored to the person with whom you are speaking.

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        It requires intentionality because before one communicates, one should think about the audience and what the audience needs in order to hear your message the way you intended it to be communicated.

        It requires active listening which is about hearing verbal and nonverbal messages.

        Even though we may be right in what we say, how we say it could derail the impact of the message and the other parties’ ability to hear the message.

        Communicating with care is also about saying things that the people in our life need to hear and doing so with love.

        The Bottom Line

        When I left the meeting with my dear friend, I wondered if I was replicating or modeling this level of openness and transparency in the rest of my relationships.

        I was intrigued and appreciative. He’d clearly thought about what he wanted to say to me, picked the appropriate time to share his feedback and then delivered it with care. He hit the ball out of the park and I’m hopeful we all do the same.

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        Featured photo credit: Kenan Buhic via unsplash.com

        Reference

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