There I was, singing at the top of my lungs and mindlessly bumping along to the latest Rihanna song (guilty pleasure) when all of a sudden, there was a massive BABUMMP BABUMMP BABUMMP…
Next thing I know, my tire exploded and I’m skidding down the freeway on just the rims. In my head, I saw it as an intense action scene from 007 where I manage to calmly pull my car over like a pro. In reality, it probably looked something like this:
When I finally regained a normal breathing pattern, the first thing I did was take out my phone and call AAA. Following the AAA phone call, I dialed my parents, and proceeded to text my friends about my recent fiasco. To pass the time as I waited for the tow truck to arrive, I checked Facebook and scrolled through tweets.
While waiting, two different police officers pulled over, and asked me if I needed assistance. In addition, two kind souls stopped to see if they could help me as well. Unfortunately, I’ve become paranoid after watching too many episodes of “I Survived”, and so I automatically assumed they were potential serial killers, locked my doors, and motioned, “I’M ON THE PHONE WITH AAA, IT’S COOL!”
This is where the point of my blog post comes in: It was completely instinctual for me to grab my phone as soon as trouble arose. I didn’t think twice about using my phone as a resource to get me out of a distressing dilemma. However, it was also instinctual for me to lock my doors at the first sign of human contact. The thought of actually letting strangers help me didn’t even cross my mind. WHY?
I justify my actions with the fact that I was alone, it was dark, and the reality of the situation is that we live in a dangerous world full of crazies. Sadly, females need to keep their guard up these days. But it did make me think about how dependent I am on my mobile phone. The first thought that came to mind was: “Wow, what would I have done without my cell?”
I thought back to those days I like to refer to as the “dark ages” when cell phones didn’t exist. As a millennial, it’s hard for me to wrap my mind around life without a cellphone – especially in emergencies.
In this situation, my phone was my savior. It allowed me to call for reliable help in the safety of my car, and stay connected with my family and friends. At the same time, it gave me an excuse to avoid the people who tried to help me because I could easily say “I’ve got the situation covered, thanks to my ability to call AAA!”. I felt safer because I had my phone.
Our technology provides us with a sense of security. When we need help, we can get it at the push of a button. Phones provide us with a sense of comfort. But at what cost? Car trouble scenarios aside, are we becoming a culture that exiles each other because we would rather use our phones as a resource? What happens when we DON’T have our phones with us? Personally, I get a tinge of anxiety when I forget my phone…
What behavioral traits have shifted as a result of new technology? Is it a good thing or a bad thing?
This debate on behavioral traits and technology is nothing new. I would like to discuss my personal opinions in a separate, more in-depth blog post. But for now, what do you think? Are you dependent on your mobile phone?