There is no shortage of studies, papers and presentations regarding the negative physical and emotional effects of excessive screen time. See http://www.ahealthiermichigan.org/2014/10/06/the-hidden-dangers-of-too-much-screen-time/ for the dangers and some easy to follow tips on better ways to manage it.
That being said, I am not a doctor rather just an Executive Search Consultant, but I’d like to share a few observations on what I have seen and experienced in our screen obsessed world. Don’t get me wrong, I do believe technology has many positive impacts on our society such as the ability to communicate and “get things done” without being tethered to a desk. In fact, I closed my first C-Level search from a chairlift in Alta, Utah. Granted, it was on a Motorola flip phone but let’s not get picky here! In a world where work/life balance is of great importance, working virtually is a necessity.
What gets lost however is the creation of a true bond that I believe one can only achieve by looking another person in the eye, a firm handshake and locking in on what the other person is saying and doing. So much is lost in digital communication; subtle body language shifts and that spark in the eyes when connection is made over a thought, an idea or an observation. I am not advocating the complete abandonment of this new “screen life” but I think there is a necessity for a middle ground. Being in the business of reading people and using intuition, observation and experience to match great people with great opportunities, I am challenging myself to get in front of more people: perspective clients, candidates, mentors and people outside of Recruiting and tech. Are you going to join me?
I have always appreciated the following lyric from The Grateful Dead’s Fare Thee Well shows celebrated their 50th year as a band, more so now than ever before...
“Sometimes you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right”
Screens are no longer strange, get out and see where you can find the light!