Why ‘Dropping In’ Is No Longer Acceptable

Why ‘Dropping In’ Is No Longer Acceptable

I remember many times as a child, where visitors just stopped by, unannounced. It was a great time – a welcome interruption! Whatever was going on in our home immediately ceased and the adult sat down around the kitchen table, sipping coffee and eating cookies for the next hour or two while they chatted and laughed. That was normal. It was expected… especially on weekends. If you had house cleaning to do, it happened early in the morning. Anything else you were working on could wait. Nothing was as important as spending quality time with people, whether it be neighbours, friends, family or even distant relatives out for a Sunday drive. Why doesn’t that happen anymore? The answer is simple. We’re too busy. We’re too busy running the kids to their sports event, getting groceries, finishing that last bit of paperwork, going to meetings… doing… doing… doing… And if someone shows up at our door unexpectedly on a Saturday morning, ach! That would be awful! If we are at home, we’re running ragged trying to do some housecleaning and get the place in order. It would be horrible if someone showed up while everything was a mess! Instead, we have to book our visits far ahead – squeeze it in on our calendars and make sure there’s time to make the house presentable beforehand. And that it’s not on a night where we’ve been so busy all day long that all we have the energy left for is to crash on the couch and watch television. Let me ask you… is it really worth it? Are all the things...
What the Amish Can Teach Us About Communication

What the Amish Can Teach Us About Communication

I really respect the Amish. If anyone knows about living a ‘simple’ life, it’s them. But there’s more than that. It’s about what they value. They keep God first, and second after God is their community. They look out for each other. They help each other. They’ve got each other’s back. The PBS show American Experience  recently aired a documentary about the Amish. When describing their adverse reaction to having a telephone, it had little to do with ‘cutting off the outside world’ and more to do with protecting their community. But that doesn’t make sense, you say. A telephone helps bring people closer together. You can pick it up and call someone any time. You can talk to people more often. Right? The Amish gentlemen disagrees. He says that when you pick up the phone to make a quick call, you’re less likely to visit the person. He values a face-to-face visit more than a quick phone call. Now think of that in light of today’s cell phones. Sure… texting and messaging keeps you in constant contact with the people you love. Or does it? Perhaps every text or quick message is taking away from a more meaningful conversation. Can we look into one another’s eyes with a text? Can we see facial expressions or mannerisms? Can we touch? Or hug? If most of our communication as humans is actually non-verbal, then how much are we missing by texting instead of visiting face-to-face? And ironically, when we do visit, we spend most of our time on our phones texting other people. Where is the connection in that? So,...