What happened to my attention span?

What happened to my attention span?

After writing the title of this post, I picked up my iPhone to discover which of the many App-possibilities lit up my screen. I then had a quick scroll through Twitter on my Macbook, you guys tweet a lot; it’s a full time job to keep up. Wait! Facebook bleeped (technical term for a ‘new message’ noise) at me through Chrome, reminding me to catch up with the three-way conversation where I regularly discuss all daily wisdom and future planning with my two lovely girl-friends.

This title is somewhat ironic to my method of working. As focused and passionate as I am about sharing my views, I feel like my stress levels are reduced when I keep on-top of everything else at the same time.

If a conclusion suddenly clicks in my mind (because one usually isn’t planned before I start writing) I have to jot it down quickly, otherwise my technology starts crying for my attention again and the pot of gold is lost forever. It’s a surprise for me too; when I actually get to the point, you know.

What did I come in here for again? *checks Clear list* ah yes, the tea I spilt 15 seconds ago…

I have become [healthily] obsessed with writing things down.If I don’t make a list then I will forget and if I forget then I get stressed and if I get stressed then I need to lie down again in the supermarket and then kids steal my shoes.

Having and using an iPhone has given me that ‘how did I ever manage without it?’ feeling. A great feeling, at first. When ‘making a list’ involved finding paper and a pen then I simply didn’t bother, but now I have a tool already in my hand. I can be super productive! I never miss a birthday. I rarely even go a lunchtime without swiping something off my to-do list. The only thing that suffers there is my bank account.

Having an iPhone has made me both insanely impatient and almost schizophrenically social.

A dangerous combination.

I read this post earlier by Tom Albrighton called 2084, which has raised some interesting thoughts. One comment states “the more social we are; the more alone.”

This idea scares a heavily-social-sharer like me.

When there’s a traffic jam I’m checking Instagram and if a movie starts to get slow I have a scroll through Facebook. I’m constantly checking that I haven’t missed any major news on Twitter. I can feel my attention span draining away when I’m out for lunch; my hands itch to swipe a screen. Wouldn’t it be awful if I’m missing something right now whilst you’re telling me a real-life, graphically detailed, yet somehow dull story about your kid’s latest sickness bug?!

I feel safe knowing that I’m always reachable if something bad were to happen, but I try to leave my phone or mac closed when at a real social event.

I miss the pre-iPhone days and I never thought I’d say that.

Is technology going to advance to become even more addictive? Scary.

  • I absolutely HATE it all.

    I miss the days at college when you arranged to meet your mates in town on Saturday at a certain time and you met then, if they were late you just hung around until they turned up. No mobile phones, no mobile internet.

    So much more time to be peaceful and not stressed.

    The ‘always on’ society with social networks, mobile phones, text messaging just means constant stress. It also means when you do spend any time with someone they only spend about 40% of it with you as most of their attention is fixed on some social network or other. That’s just insulting that someone thinks reading what their mates are having for lunch on twitter is more important than interacting with you. It’s depressing, like hanging around with a group of zombies all glued to a piece of technology. I literally don’t want to live on this planet anymore.