The Simple Life: Technology

The Simple Life: Technology

Can we talk for a minute? I mean really talk? A person-to-person, face-to-face conversation? Not a tweet, not an email, not an IM, not a text … a REAL, human interaction. Or at least a phone call! Call me old-fashioned, but I miss those days! Of course, I’m the kind of gal who, thanks to lessons from my grandmother, still writes hand-written thank-you notes.

A few weeks ago, we had a tropical storm blow through Florida, and it knocked out our electricity for 24 hours. Despite our sweat and discomfort, my munchkin and I turned our situation into a bit of a camping game … burning the lantern for light, sleeping on a pallet of cushions on the living room floor so we were closer to the breezes coming in from the back door, cooking our dinner outdoors, telling stories for entertainment until bedtime. The simple life.

Sketch by Sidney E. King

It really reminded me of the pioneers and their simple, easily-amused lifestyle. Their homes were simple, and their fun was simple.

The Benefits of Technology

Granted, I get the benefits of modern-day technology. I was soooo grateful when my air conditioning came back on, and I really feel for the folks north of here who have been without electricity for more than a week at this point, due to some other storms.

I understand that having a television helps us stay connected to what’s going on in the world, alerts us to impending disasters (like tropical storms), and provides us much-needed entertainment and stress release at the end of a hard day of work.

I get how LinkedIn can help make a business connection that can lead to work. I have experienced personally how Facebook can reunite old college buddies and high school friends in a way that phone calls and email alone couldn’t.

And I’m aware that, as a writer and editor who does nearly 100% of her work remotely, I would not be able to earn my living without my computer, email, my cell phone, voice mail. I’ve even been advised that if I want to stay at the top of my game, I’m going to need to get a smartphone and start texting. Oy!!

What lessons we can learn from the simple lives of our pioneer ancestors?

An evening of simple entertainment.
Sketch by Garth Williams.

After supper, Pa said he supposed he’d better start to town early next morning.

“Yes, Charles, you’d better go,” Ma said. “And, Charles, I’d like to write to the folks in Wisconsin. If you mail a letter now, they can write this winter, and then we can hear from them next spring!”

– “Little House on the Prairie”

  • Slow down
  • Focus on who you’re with at the moment; ignore the call waiting or the ringing cell phone
  • Enjoy the simple things that don’t require electricity
  • Slow down
  • Count your blessings
  • Eat outside
  • Write a letter or a short note
  • Make a phone call instead of sending an email
  • Slow down!!

What simple-life tips can you add?


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