A friend of mine showed me an ad for Constant Contact the other day. It’s an email marketing tool with some great applications for certain businesses. I was just struck by the name – Constant Contact. The idea made me shiver.
Constant Contact – is that healthy? Do we want that with anyone? We all love our children. We all like to be in regular contact with them. But constant? When they wake up in the middle of then night, we are usually not excited by the opportunity for further closeness.
Even our spouses. How many couples go a little crazy upon retirement? All of the sudden the husband, who was typically out all day, is constantly underfoot. “What are you doing now?” “How about now?” I don’t even like it when my husband’s office is closed for the day. And I’ve already warned him not to even consider retirement!
And that’s with our nearest and dearest. Nowadays we have the opportunity to be in constant contact with everyone we know or have ever known -- our whole extended family, including long lost relatives, all our work colleagues including our boss, people we went to college with, people we went to high school with, elementary school, even our first grade teacher…
Do we really want this?
I don’t mean to sound anti-social. Sometimes it’s nice to catch up with an old friend. My husband recently called his fourth grade teacher to say thank you (she pretended to remember him!). It’s nice to know the access is there.
But sometimes the constant contact, the unceasing noise leads to a loss -- a loss of downtime, a loss of thinking, a loss of processing, a loss of introspection.
There is no time left to figure out who we are or where we want to go. There is no time to evaluate our old goals and determine fresh ones. There is no opportunity to examine our relationships and see if they’re thriving or if they require improvement (they usually do!). There’s no time to appreciate the good we have, the gifts the Almighty has given us.
I don’t think constant contact is a good thing. We all need a little quiet space. We need to make a spiritual accounting and create new plans for growth. We need to think about our friendships, our marriages, our children. We need to evaluate our career choices and options. We need to stop and enjoy the beauty around us.
In fact I plan to do just that in one minute. Just as soon as I check my emails…