We’ve learned that adults can put down their phones
I watched two moms play Chutes and Ladders in the cafe while their kids were taking a class. It was awesome. Everywhere you look in the center, you see adults focusing on each other, on their kids, and on their friends. They are perfectly content to put their phones down and be present.
We have some older couples that come in regularly for tea and to play cards in the cafe. Families play board games, parents knit together, kids play with puzzles…everywhere you look, you see people interacting without any digital assistance.
And they’re happy about it. I’ve had so many parents thank us for not allowing tablets or electronics in the park. Their kids are playing checkers, or tag, or playing with trains, or reading. And while the kids are engaged, the adults are having conversations with friends that seem so long overdue. People are communicating face to face. There’s eye contact, and facial expressions, and nuances from tone of voice.
We’ve learned that if the environment allows for it, most of us are perfectly willing to focus on the human being right in front of us. Sure we’ll take some pictures of our kids, and maybe the occasional selfie. We’ll share it with our friends and family who cannot be there in person. Yet overall, we’re happy about the opportunity for real-time human connection.
Sometimes it feels like we’re all being portrayed as these mindless zombies wandering around staring at our phones. It’s just not true. We just need space and opportunity, and then we are happy to be the social creatures we are wired to be.
If you see me buzzing through the center and you catch me smiling at you while you play cards with your kids, it’s because I’m happy for you. I’m grateful that you get it. Thanks for recognizing what’s important.
I’ll get out of your way now – it’s your turn to “Go Fish” 🙂