Modern Technology Doesn't Automatically Make You Too Busy

It's easy to think that we're all so busy these days because of technology and the internet. It turns out people had too much to do before the internet sucked all their productivity away.

Psychology Today highlights a quote from a newspaper piece written by Laura Ingalls Wilder (author of the renowned Little House on the Prairie series), speaking in 1924 about how busy we all are:

“We are so overwhelmed with things these days that our lives are all, more or less, cluttered. I believe it is this, rather than a shortness of time, that gives us that feeling of hurry and almost of helplessness. Everyone is hurrying and usually just a little late. Notice the faces of the people who rush past on the streets or on our country roads! They nearly all have a strained, harassed look, and anyone you meet will tell you there is no time for anything anymore.”

If that sounds familiar, it's because we've all felt it at some point or another. Except she felt it in the 1920s, at a time when radio was still new. While it's possible for our current world of information overload and 50-hour workweeks to take its toll on our health, it's worth remembering that people were tired and busy long before we got here. It's just another reason to assess whether you're really as busy as you think you.

Don’t Assume That Everything Is so Different These Days [Psychology Today]

Picture: Benson Kua


    Barely any stores or businesses had to stay open or worry about operations 24 7 before globalism (only possible with modern technology),

    It was possible for an entire household to live comfortably on a single income, now it takes two,

    Before globalism, nobody outside of China had to compete with slave/prison labor rates,

    We've never had 7 billion people on the planet, all competing for dwindling resources, technology makes it possible to continue accumulating and wasting resources, without forcing us to stop and rethink our approach or if there are any side effects or impacts of our activity, it has enabled our mindless disposable consumer society to exist since the industrial revolution allowed us to have more goods than we'd ever need,

    People were busy before us, but they were never as busy as us
    Modern technology isn't making us busier, it is enabling it, we simply need wisdom to catch up to technology, so our technology is used well, rather than misused to complicate life rather than simplify it.

    The treadmill is speeding up.
    Maybe it's time to slow down and think before we're thrown off the treadmill against our will.

    No, I'm not a socialist, I'm not a communist, I'm not saying we need to kill capitalism, I'm not saying we need to become hippies or luddites and destroy technology
    I'm saying we need to sit down and think about what is important in life and what is sensible, instead of rolling along in the status quo, just another cog in a machine that is headed for a cliff and diving into every available choice without caution.

    Just because something is possible, doesn't mean it should be done.

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