Intimacy: Looking For That Elusive Human Touch
One of the paradoxes and challenges of the computer age is that we seem to have more friends than ever (on social media, at least), but it feels like in real life, our real and live (non-virtual) relationships are possibly a bit less intimate. It has gotten to the point where our virtual Facebook likes and retweets seem to have taken the place of some of our real intimacy.
But social media can either be used wisely, or foolishly – it’s you who makes that choice. And, the choice is informed by your highest values or priorities. Here’s an example: How many people have you watched, sitting together at a dinner table, tapping away at their phones instead of speaking to each other?
You may have inwardly criticized them for not being present in the moment. The truth, though, is that they are present – they’re just being present with the person at the other end of the phone, rather than the person in front of them. As with most things in life, managing time so that you can have greater presence or intimacy with the people in your life comes down to prioritising. It might sound harsh, but maybe the person on the phone is a greater priority, which is why the phone-user is focusing more attention on them.
The problem comes in when we try to focus on too many things at once. That’s when you end up having situations like the one in question: your energy becomes scattered, you end up distracted, and instead of having one meaningful interaction at a time, you have several ineffectual interactions with multiple people.
How to change this situation and achieve intimacy again?
Simple: prioritise. Nowadays, we even have apps that help us schedule our time and activities in order of importance so that we can be more productive, making this easier than ever. If you prefer not to use technology, make your own list. For instance, I structure my day in the order of the things I prefer to invest the most time in, starting with speaking with large audience, followed by engagements with medium and small crowds, because this is my favourite thing to do. After that, I make time for hosting workshops, then broadcasting podcasts – important, but less so then my speaking engagements. I use the remaining hours for giving webinars, private consultations and addressing media requests.
While it might sound restrictive, the opposite is true. It is wise to fill your day with the things that are most important to you, otherwise lesser priorities will sneak in and you’ll end up having fewer hours to invest in your most important actions and true and most meaningful relations.
Enjoying true intimacy is worth it.
Who Is The Writer?
Dr John Demartini is a human behavior specialist, educator, international best-selling author and founder of the Demartini Institute. Visit Dr Demartini’s website for more information.
Want to find out more?
Click here to find out about the issue taking place earlier this year regarding iPhone addiction in teenagers, and why they report finding it so hard to part with their devices.