Frantic Pace Of Life – Don Charisma’s Opinion


I’m pretty young in the scale of things, certainly compared with Sequioa redwood trees – some of whom live into the hundreds, and even thousands of years. I can only wonder at the changes these ancients have seen !

Change is good, but how much and how fast ?

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How has our pace of life changed ? Well, personally, I don’t remember days of knights and kings. However I do remember when not everyone had a mobile telephone, in fact as far back as the days when telephones were one per household. Computers weren’t even connected to the internet. Social media didn’t exist, Facebook, well let’s just say that was a gleam in some guy’s eye !

What’s a little worrying is the pace at which everything moves. It hasn’t gotten slower, it just seems to get faster and faster.

I’m writing this because I was repeatedly pestered by email over a non-urgent issue during the Christmas and New Year period. IN days gone-by people used to take at least a week, maybe two, off for the holidays. It seems NOW, these days, I can’t escape, my free time further and further eroded. Will I eventually be on-the-go 24-7, kept awake and alert by intravenous caffeine and nicotine drips ? … Or perhaps I should have just turned off my email !

We’re supposed to be human beings … not human doings 😀

Our pace of life is getting faster – is that “healthy” and where does it end ?

Cheers

Don Charisma

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78 thoughts on “Frantic Pace Of Life – Don Charisma’s Opinion

  1. I feel exactly the same way. It seems every year, time moves exponentially faster than the previous year. Sometimes I feel as though I should disconnect from the computer, social media and cell phones altogether. Yet, we are so dependent on them for important things like connecting with family and getting our work done. UGH! I think it’s all about trying to find that balance, which is not easy…

  2. Brilliant topic! The hardest thing I have ever learnt is to say ‘NO’ without explanations. It is probably also my highest achievement merely because it completely changed my life. It is important to me to be able to just say no without being questioned about my motives. If I say ‘No’, you should know that my reasons are valid and questioning me would question my integrity. And that (finally) brings me to your post. The same goes for ourselves. We have to sometimes just say no to ourselves without double-guessing our own integrity. So we have to say things like “No, I will not read my e-mails or answer my phone until after my period of rest, and that is that!” It is amazing how quickly others learn to respect one’s boundaries if you respect your own. 🙂 Hope you managed your few days off 😀

  3. Reblogged this on A Little of This and A Little of That and commented:
    Ya know, he has a good point.
    I’m old enough to remember some of the same things…being attached to the wall when you wanted to phone a friend, having to call back because they didn’t have an answering machine, going outside to play, static electricity on the plastic slide, water running down a metal slide in order to cool it off, catching the bus before the sun rose in the morning and getting home after it set, being a latch key kid, rotary phones….yeah, we have all these advancements in technology but we seem to be going faster and faster rather than slowing down and enjoying all that technology!

  4. Not healthy, Don. You need to turn all those things off and not worry! I am going to show my age – when I was little we had a single phone with an operator to whom you would give the name of the person you wanted to talk to. Then we had…wait for this..a party line! Often I would pick up the phone and whoever we shared the line with was talking. Then we had phone numbers that began with letters. My grandmother’s was LudLow 3-5429. Okay, I’m older than dirt!

    1. LOL … yup, I need to turn it off and do something else instead, like relax or sleep ! … and I’m probably showing my age but I can still remember having seen telephones with letters and numbers on 😀

  5. We should determine our own pace, and whenever possible, our own change. Unfortunately, we get caught up in the fifteen attention span our society dictates and our race to acquire what we tell ourselves is most important in life. We are our own worst enemy.

  6. The redwood treetalk reminded me about Nature is speaking organistation.
    The redwood do speak, listen for yourself at:

    He’s been around longer than humans—will you listen? Robert Redford is The Redwood.
    http://natureisspeaking.org/theredwood.html#.VKrdeI0yjY8.mailto

    I can also recommend when Julia Roberts speaks like mother nature, that really got me thinking.
    Julia Roberts is Mother Nature — Nature Is Speaking
    http://natureisspeaking.org/mothernature.html

    Maybe my comment is outside the original question, but on the other hand not. Are we to busy, with our constant onlinedemands, to notice nature and enviromental issues?

  7. Excellent post Don. I think your reference to your Boundaries post is on target. In the case of electronic connections with almost all marked inportant or starred, the solution I see working best is self-limits. When working I check emails twice a day, I do answer my business phone during regular working hours, social media is part of my marketing so I check those as well during work. Social media that is personal waits until after work and only when I feel like checking it, same with personal email. Only friends, family and personal contacts like my insurance broker have my home number. Basically, my limits are simple – work during work, now work after work. It is very hard to imagine a legitimate freelance writing assignment emergency.

    Thanks for the post.

    Alan

  8. I think our modern conveniences are a blessing and a curse. I mean, yes, it is nice to be able to email over snail mail, but like you said, now everyone thinks everything is urgent. I don’t think the urgency has really changed, but rather our state of mind has changed with instant gratification. Also, there is such a thing as “Nature Deficit Disorder”, that we have created in our society. And, coincidentally, we didn’t have the ADD diagnosis when I was growing up, because kids were outside getting dirty and hurting themselves, not stuck with a house full of electronics, developing adult onset diabetes. We are heading down a dangerous path. Thanks for the reminder of such an important topic!

  9. Christmas and new year do not seem to hold the same meaning. This year was certainly and incredibly unexpected busy time. Sometimes you got to go with the punches – for reasons… I think it is up to each of us to choose and decide the validity of reasons we will bend our own rules or change decisions for. I was going to take a two week sabbatical from online… well um – yeah – lol… that did not happen…but reasons were valuable ones. NO WAY to please ALL the people ALL the time. GOTTO breathe?

      1. …and it is OUR choice – which one. Also not expect people to be mind readers 😉 Eg – sometimes I try talk to hubby and he seems far off… then I click and see he is reading something online not his playing a game – so now I ask now… is it ok to talk now.. or I just crap on him and say ‘Why did you not tell me you were busy reading… I can’t always JUST tell…’
        I think as well when we deal with a lot of people all the time (at the pace we seem to have to do it in these days) it gets harder and harder to determine each individuals pace and flow and body language (or text language) Makes it even more important in ‘virtual world’ to be specific – and clear. ‘I can’t right now’ should be acceptable language…without feeling like we will hurt or let someone down. Or ‘Is this urgent I am kinda in the middle of something?’ – you know – concise quick back and forth tot check where each party is at – unlike this comment.
        We should do it in reality…and STILL forget to be sure someone is in the right place to discuss things or chit chat etc. We seem as humans to think that everyone will be in the same place or mind set as we are.. well I MAY be flying high and full of beans and you are drowning.
        Its a tricky one… but we (humans) need to learn to wait…
        And on that note in context of the article here… that means slowing down…
        I should take this on board actually. Like a freaking run away train this morning! lol.
        Have a good week dear. 🙂

  10. I have a rule to myself and this help me a lot :P. No more than hour in fb per day. If is not holiday or weekend, not use a mobile phone until lunch time and I switch off at eleven p.m. If I am working, studying or if I am with someone else I don’t use it (to be respectful). I try to use it rasonably, I’m not a teenager. The problem is in not setting limits to ourselves! 😀

  11. “Human Beings, not Human Doings.” We need to remember that. Doing is important, but sometimes we forget that life is really about being. We don’t even take time to know ourselves. Thanks for this post.

  12. I find that I have to take “tech breaks”, perhaps you should attempt the same… I do try for at least one hour a day (or even a full day over holidays) to turn off my phone, computer, mobile device, etc… We need to recharge and be away from these things, 9 times out of 10 life IS NOT that urgent.
    Slow down, stop and smell the roses, right?
    Take care.

  13. I’ve turned off the sound on all my electronic devices including my computer and cellphone. Well, the cell is set to vibrate so if I’m close enough I can hear that but the ringtone is deactivated. There are no beeps, pings or ringtones if I receive emails, calls or instant messages.

    I check them at my leisure when time allows. I’ll check the phone most often in case of an emergency(maybe 4 or 5 times a day).

    I’ve got work to do. My electronic devices are meant to be tools(not obstacles) to aid in getting the work done. They do my bidding, not the other way around.

    Of course, when Skynet takes over the internet and enslaves the world that will all change but until then I’M THE BOSS!!! (LOL)

    Best Regards,
    Eric

      1. That would be the first time you use a quote you give credit the second time you say everyone says… And the third time well ive always said 🙂

  14. That’s what happens when you’re famous!! Everyone wants a piece of you Vecino 😉 Setting boundaries is key. I totally agree with you. I think the race to keep the pace is one of the main factors in the populace’s degenerating mental health. Saludos, La Panzona {Pahn.So.Nuh}

  15. My first series as a nascent blogger last yr on the impact of technology on learning ended up in a magazine. “The Dark Side of Technology”. The pace of postmodern life is really something, is pervasive. I wondered on this recently, and imagined it’s less crazy outside the U.S. and developed cities. It’s pretty bad in Thailand, huh? The internet (and net neutrality) have smoothed out the cyberfreeway in such a way that changes, esp in the communication landscape, seem to promise acceleration even from our current baseline. Which is scary, because communication at present is instant!

    1. I was necessarily vague about the issue, because it is more complex and it’s business so discretion was important. However, the issue I was being pestered over was from back home in the UK, by British people not Thailand 😀 … and the previous opinion post about boundaries may have been related !

      City living has probably always been faster than living elsewhere. I remember visiting Tottenham Court Road (TCR) in London MANY years ago before online shopping had started. The area was PACKED to the rafters with people buying stuff, you know gadgets, TCR was THE place to go for such things. Literally buzzing, a Mecca for those wanting camcorders or walkmans etc.

      I don’t think it’s any different in any big city anywhere in the world – some places are probably busier than the states, plenty of cities in Asia that are sprawling too, and Asians are VERY innovative.

      As for things getting quicker, well there’s still a million and one ways they can “improve” what we already have …

      1. Good point on city vs. outlying areas.

        “well there’s still a million and one ways they can “improve” what we already have …”

        THIS a window into the mind of a leader. I’d tip my hat to you if I wore one. So I
        *Curtsy*

  16. Hey Don, I was feeling crazy with my phone ringing, dinging for text message, donging for email, light blinking for facebook. I felt like a zombie. I cancelled my facebook and now leave my phone downstairs. I cancelled internet and cable. I do not miss cable. I think it is not healthy to have your sleep so distubed. But the most successful people barely sleep, at least that is what i have heard. But anyway, great post as always 🙂

  17. Great debate topic. My wife is a computer programmer, actually a data mining specialist. anyhow, she is constantly tied into her work, social media, or some form of electronic device. Even through blogging and running a business, I know firsthand how time can pass by while ‘plugged in’. We do make it a point to walk, bike, hike, fish, zipline or something when we can though. The instant gratification of today’s society is scary however.

  18. All this is very true and I think that social media has played a huge role in making the world smaller and the rat race faster. However, it is not all bad. I love the way that I can attend to urgent issues at work without driving 2 to 3 hours in heavy traffic to get to work. I can also stay in touch with my extended family every day if I choose to do this and I’ve been able to trace family and friends I haven’t had contact with in donkeys’ years. As you rightly mention, it is necessary to switch off the e-mail now and then – it all comes down to better time management I think?

    1. LOL, we’d never have allowed the changes if there weren’t improvements !

      And yes, sometimes it’s about time management, another possibility is the aforementioned boundaries (previous opinion post) … which I guess is what switching off the phone is 😀

  19. This is a good topic to think about. One of the reasons I like history is that it provides some perspective. Think what life was like before there was electricity and people were governed by the sun and the light of the moon and stars. People adjust but we are different in many ways from people in the past.

  20. I wonder if change has always been a fact of life for humans.

    We went from airborne for 15seconds in 1903 to rockets to the moon in 1969. That was a massive change.

    We went from horse drawn coaches taking days to travel across the country to a network of railways across the UK with journey times measured in hours in the space of two or three decades in the 19th century.

    Indeed, the significance of the changes from agricultural to industrial revolution probably felt at least as dramatic to our ancestors as the advent of the internet feels to those of us who have seen it develop from nothing.
    So is it the speed of the change or the acceleration in the speed of change that we are experiencing now that might be so different from that experienced in the past?

    Again, I don’t know.

  21. We had a discussion about this kind of thing at work. The company i work for is going through a period of change to keep up with the move to digital platforms and the pace of the world, which is increasing exponentially.

    The conversation was based around ‘the bigwigs’ ensuring that they not only allow time for their employees to take time out of their busy roles to work on their personal development and home lives, but to make sure that their employees feel confortable doing so. I was in an all day seminar that started an hour after work usually does, and finished an hour earlier. The woman running the session asked who had taken advantage of the late start to have an extra hour in bed? Turns out we had actually all gone to work early to get some stuff done before leaving our desks for the day. She explained how it was important that we didn’t feel stressed about taking a day away from our work lives. That companies NEEDED to look after the welfare and wellbeing of their staff because NOBODY can keep up with the ever increasing pace of technology and ways of living without taking regular and significant breaks. She then pretty much forbade us from going back to work after the session. I know for a fact that a few people still did. I, however, went home. Life is too short to spend it all at work.

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