A blank page awaits me.
So let’s get to it.
I'm Kelvin, and today I’m proud to introduce a brand new book written by my friend Deepika Mittra called Social Media & Technology, How to Use It Without Being Consumed By It. It’s a book to teach people like you and me how to find balance in the daily dance with online distractions and an increasingly connected digital society that’s supposed to enrich our lives.
You see, when your mind is clear and free, the possibilities can be overwhelming. I write for a living, and I’m embarrassed to say I often do so under the weight of thoughts that have little to do with the task at hand. What’s due tomorrow? What do I need to accomplish next week? Do the dogs need to go outside?
Mine is a profession that’s vulnerable to distraction.
Yours too, I’d be willing to wager.
What’s Your Relationship With Technology?
I wrote this post at this particular time because I have an online program that told me to do so. It was next on my list, so I was notified of the task. I would have forgot. It’s not that my work editing Deepika’s book isn’t important to me (it certainly is, else I never would have hopped on board), but I’m a busy guy. I’m sure you’re busy too. The sheer volume of information, both useful and completely useless, is enough to drown out even the most crucial of our responsibilities.
I use apps that enforce deadlines. I use programs to help me pay bills and send invoices. In the past few years I’ve willingly assimilated into a world where automated programs and machines have more control over my life than I do. It’s true. Without the internet, I’d be lost.
The internet has also taught me more than I ever thought I wanted to know about the world. Online social communities such as twitter and reddit have helped shaped my thoughts about religion, politics, social justice, socio-economic conflict, and what will happen when a dog and a cat become best friends. It’s a never-ending firehose of content that will assault your eyelids for a thousand years if you allow it. Technology doesn’t fatigue. Technology doesn’t shrink.
The digital world won’t stop.
Only you control the off switch.
Social Media & Technology: How to Use it Without Being Consumed By It
Editing Deepika’s book has changed my life. I deleted Facebook from my phone. I started teaching myself to play the guitar instead of plugging into the internet each evening. I’ve allowed myself to rely on my mind and my memory a little bit more.
After agreeing to work with Deepika but silently believing this was simply just another job, another client, I slowly began to realize that the audience to which we were writing was occupied by people who live and behave exactly like me.
Do you find yourself looking at your phone more than you’d care to admit? Do you worry there’s a world out there you’re missing? Are you looking for a healthier balance?
In Social Media & Technology: How to Use It Without Being Consumed By It, Deepika’s not going to tell you to unplug for good. As a mental health specialist, she doesn’t believe we should prevent ourselves from using the fantastical tools of today entirely, but we do need to remember why we’re using such tools.
To enhance our lives. Not to clog them with up with noise.
How Are We Rolling This Out?
Today is the first in a series of posts we’re going to roll out over the next three months. Each week we’re going to publish a new chapter from the book so you can learn more about your relationship with the machines and how you can make sure you’re the one controlling the on/off switch.
If you’re coming here for the first time, you can also subscribe to our newsletter to get notifications each week of new published chapters.
Writing this book was a work of passion for Deepika, and editing it was a fascinating journey for me, and I’m excited to re-live the process.
And I hope you’ll come along for the ride.