Have you noticed how may people you have to avoid on the street? And I mean literally avoid or you’ll collide with them. I was walking the streets of Melbourne a couple of months ago and I started to take notice of how many people I had to navigate around simply because they weren’t looking where they were going.
Now I don’t have a problem moving out of the way for people. I like to believe I abide by the unwritten pedestrian rules – be aware, take care, show respect (I may have made that up but you know what I mean!). What I have a problem with is why I continually have to do that.
These people seem to be more the majority doing something the minority isn’t. They are walking along completely absorbed by their phone and expect people to move out of the way for them. Whether it’s texting, emailing, Pokémoning, scrolling social media sites – they are absorbed and not concentrating on what’s happening around them or aware of whom is around them. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve seen nearly get run over or cause an accident.
Is this what Busy has come to?
Is busy forcing us to be controlled by technology even when walking the streets? Not being able to take time out to walk and get lunch or walk from A to B without being glued to phones looking at emails or seeing what we may have missed out on in the last 10 minutes on social media?
Are we really that important?
I think there is really only one legitimate reason to be taking close notice of your phone while walking and that is if you’re following a map. Heaven knows that is a time saver, stress reducer and in some cases when travelling a marriage saver. But, these people I have to avoid, constantly, aren’t looking at maps. To reference a map to your location you actually need to look up and down. These people are only looking down and typing away merrily!
I think we have a massive problem when we can’t simply walk without being absorbed by busy. This is a new phenomenon to me and becoming equal to the phenomenon of people being absorbed by their phones on public transport. Do we really want to avoid any form of contact so badly that we must be busy? Do we really think we must use every second of every day being absorbed in something to combat the relentlessness that is business these days? When do we get time to breathe?
This seems to be a shiny, brand new habit we are creating for ourselves and further proof that if you don’t control and break this busy cycle you get stuck right in it in very creative and innovative ways – if you let yourself.
Take a look around next time you’re walking on the streets, if you’re the minority, and notice how many people have their heads down and completely unaware. It’s rather fascinating!