In 1960, an expert opinion to the American Congress on the future of technology posited the following: that people will only be working for 22 hours a week and most of us would retire at 40. The expert opinion was basing their submission on the advantages that technology was touted to bring and they got over excited. Today, even with technology we have people working longer hours a day as compared to when there was no technology. Meanwhile, our habits that were not put into consideration by this expert option have changed drastically.
Missing The Mark
It seems to me like he assume that the fundamentals of living, and most especially working would be “taken over” by technology, leaving humans lots of time to do “nothing”. However, the fact is that the things that did change were those that never were projected and expected to change. Our behavior as we interact with technology is something that this expert did not put into consideration.
That is why I question our supposed development as a human race in my upcoming book “Raising The Inner Game of Your Child.”Are we any greater a human race today as compared to the generations that have passed? What is the yardstick of greatness anyway? I think that when a generation knows and lives their intended purpose, that generation becomes great. Each generation, I believe has a unique impact that they have to leave on earth. When technology came into our world, we did not perceive how it would affect our daily habits in work and relationships.
What most typifies today’s generation?
Our generation today unfortunately is largely selfish and self-centered. Largely, we do things that protect our comfort zones. We seek comfort rather than impact. We “put our best foot forward”, masking what we really are. We are not as deep as we ought to be, we are shallow but pretend to be deep. What will our current generation be remembered for?
In this century, there are some few pertinent things that have been forgotten. These are power habits that we so badly need them today. The following are those power habits that have been forgotten.
1. The Habit Of Pausing To Reflect
We are surrounded with gadgets, electronics all around us. If it is not our vehicles, it is our television sets. If it’s not our television sets, it’s our computers. And if it is not our computers, it is our smartphones. From dawn to dusk, we are totally consumed and engaged with our electronics. As a result, many people do not have time to pause and reflect about life. We are always answering a notification, replying to an email, playing a game or watching a soap of a favorite show, and our phones are never off. In fact, the greatest emergency in our century today is a daily one: when the battery of our smart phones hits as low as 50%!
The power habit of pausing to reflect over life is so absolutely vital in our lives because of the following reasons:
- It helps us to clarify the direction that our life is taking
- It helps us meditate about the greater things and meaning of life.
- It helps us consider the most important things and put them in perspective
- It informs our actions in that as we act, we are acting on purpose, and not just reacting to what life gives us.
2. The Habit of Waiting/Patience
We have microwaves to cook our food and yet we are impatient that a microwave it taking long. We have fast food restaurants that churn in our desires at a moment’s notice. Somehow, all of our life is on an urgency mode…the wrong kind of urgency that is propelled by impatience and the need for instant gratification. In so doing, we fail to acknowledge the incredible power of process and patience. In turn, we find ourselves jumping from one venture to another, looking for something that will give us instant gratification make us money instantly, lots of money at that. We forget that great things like great food are marinated and simmer over time. The power habit of patience and honoring process is absolutely critical in developing our life purpose and calling. It helps us acquire depth, helps us plan and helps us focus on the right things. The power habit of waiting helps us to have focus.
3. The Power Habit of Endurance
Since we want things instantly, we tend to have very low levels of endurance and resilience as compared to our fore fathers. Our staying power is an all-time low. We have the highest statistics of broken marriages, broken families and broken contracts. In the days past, a contract would be a word given and that was enough. Today, convenience trumps all that we are pursuing. We change like chameleons immediately discomfort comes in. When our word hurts us, when it is uncomfortable, we shift so quickly to something easier. We do not stay with things until they are delivered. Endurance as a power habit is something that we all need in this day and age. It is one of the greatest and salient ingredients of life. Endurance delivers character. It delivers depth and makes us resilient. Unfortunately, technology cannot help you with endurance.
4. The Power Habit of Curiosity and Learning
It seems to me like technology spoon-feeds us. Whereas we are the generation with the easiest access to the any type of information in all the earth, we are also the generation that are most uninformed as compared to the information that is available to us. We are content with the comfort and pleasures that the technology has brought us. The power habit of curiosity is what inherently makes us grow through leaps and bounds. It is next to impossible to grow if we are not curious. I cannot learn something new if I do not seek it. And I cannot seek it if I am not curious.
Slowly but surely, we are losing the fundamental power habits that shape character, depth, excellence and cause us to take action in the right direction. It makes no difference how much we innovate and come up with gadgets and electronics, if we will lose the power habits, it becomes a zero sum game. All ado about nothing! So we need to go back to the basics of life in case we needed to maintain our identity as humans.