Tonight I heard a reply about a very sad situation which took place earlier this week, and started to wonder how the fast pace of our lives contributed to this situation. Some still think that having a lot of money is the answer to all their problems, but there is more and more proof that money doesn’t buy happiness.
If you haven’t heard the story, I won’t mention names because it isn’t who, it’s the what that I am concerned with. A man who from all outward appearances should have been the happiest man in the world. His dream job, a new baby, and plenty of money banked. Every thing he had worked for he had reached.
What did he do? He killed the mother of his baby and then himself.
A co-worker when asked about the situation answered that he has been asking himself if there was something he should have seen. His comments after that were shocking to me. He talked about how instead of talking to those he works with, he spends time on his phone, on Facebook or Twitter.
As you may notice I don’t have Facebook or Twitter or any other social networking on my blog. I don’t want to be so tied to my computer or phone and have chosen to avoid these things. I’m not saying it’s wrong to use these networking services, only that I choose not to. I do have a personal Facebook account so I could see pictures of my youngest grand child. I don’t use it for anything other than connecting with family and that works for me, but then again I come from a generation that still remembers what it was like not to be connected all the time.
What about being on a phone? I’ve talked before about how annoying it is to have company texting rather than being fully with the rest of us.
This photo is of a beautiful spot in nature, okay the water looks a little muddy, but it’s still serene. I can see two friends who thought it would be a nice relaxing place to just sit quietly and have time in a natural setting to talk maybe even brought a packed lunch, but they both brought their phones, and whoever is on the other end is more important than the person they are with or the views they came to see. See the house in the distance, could one of them be talking to some one inside the house, who felt it was easier to just make a call then a walk outside?
What would life be like if we pulled back from being connected all the time? What if we spent less time on video games, watching YouTube, or posting every thing we do on our Facebook account?
I read that we, for all the technology that connects us 24/7, are more isolated than ever before. What if we unplugged for a day each week and went outdoors, had a barbecue with neighbors or family? What if we joined a bowling league or a choir, or whatever interests you? Would we see less suicides?
I considered how my life has changed. If I were working full time to pay for a larger apartment or material things I still believed I needed I wouldn’t have the time to help my family, to be able to watch the grand children when an emergency comes up, or to be available to spend time with an ill friend when I sense she needs an ear.
We are in the middle of the biggest consumerist holiday of the year, so obviously money is taking center stage for many families, many going into debt to have the perfect Christmas, how are they going to deal with the stress of that debt later? So is money a blessing or a curse? Is earning money for what we deem we want taking center stage to the relationships in society?
Let’s remember this Christmas to make it about the people in our lives, not the presents or the decorations, or even the food.