Solutions June 2016 - Page 59

This is probably weird, but I like to walk by open laptops in a coffee shop (which is where I spend at least half of my free time). I always peek to see if Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest is open. Almost every time, at least one of them is. Sometimes all three. And smartphones are everywhere. They’ve become the Mom-I-reallyhave-to-have-this gift of the century. It’s incredible, isn’t it? We get to be connected 24/7, to almost all of the information in the world. (Although my greatest talent when it comes to the iPhone seems to be shattering my screen.) If you’re not on Twitter, people question your sanity, because everybody is on Twitter. Even my grandma has a Twitter account, and she’s eighty years old! Addiction is a word running wild today. It’s splashed across headlines and rolls off the tongues of news broadcasters. You’ve heard the tragic stories about celebrities and next-door neighbors alike who got sucked in by a problem they never dreamed they’d have. Some people are held captive by drugs or alcohol, while others are consumed with shopping or eating or gambling. Whatever their obsessions, you’ve learned to recognize addiction in people. You’ve learned to recite the maxim “everything in moderation,” and maybe even started to tune out the endless talks you get in classrooms and on commercials about the dangers these things can cause. All the while, some of us are busy feeding our own obsession with pinning and liking and commenting every day. It seems innocent enough, doesn’t it? But could this be a whole new brand of addiction—one that’s subtle and socially acceptable? It’s dangerous because we live in the loudest time in history. The voices are constant, and there are so many of them. Even in our m