I was thinking about the year I was born this morning; 1978. I was telling my children about it, “We didn’t have i pads, i phones, cds, text messages…we had one TV with two channels and we listened to records or tapes. We read a lot of books and drew and played with our toys.” Then I had to describe what a cassette tape was and it got me thinking.
Suppose, for one week, we return to the simplicity of the year we were born; in terms of technology and communication. That would mean no emails, no social media (unless of course, you’re really young), writing letters, no i phones, no i pads… all of that over stimulating stuff would be gone. Just for a week. Could you do it? Could you write a letter? Could you read a newspaper (as in a real one, not something on a computer screen)? Could you survive watching only two TV channels?
I think that even thinking about this past simplicity is comforting. We are so over stimulated with constant contact, with our mobile phones attached to our hands like some extra mechanical body part, that we don’t, as a general rule have simplicity anymore. We are always contactable, reachable and in view. As Ruby Wax spoke about at TED, human beings are not physically wired for the over stimulation of the modern age. We are becoming more and more stressed due to sensory over load.
Our parents didn’t grow up like this and our grandparents certainly didn’t. I remember watching “Inspector Gadget” as a child and thinking how “mad” the photo image watches Gadget and Penny had. Today, that’s Skype or I Phone Face Time; it’s not only reality, it’s a part of daily modern communication.
If you think back to the year of your birth and imagine living that way now, what would it be like? Could you live like that for a week or even a day to try and reconnect to some sense of simplicity?
Love Claire x