Tuesday, November 03, 2015

Being Connected and Perceived Importance

On my job, our tech is somewhat behind the times. My work-issued laptop doesn't have wi-fi, so on a day when I'm attending meetings in different locations, I'm disconnected completely unless I happen to be in a room with a network jack or switch. 

I'm also not important enough to have a BlackBerry.

Every time I comment that I wish I could get a BlackBerry, someone inevitably asked "Why would you want a BlackBerry? Then "they" can bug you 24/7. Most people comment that they hate BlackBerries because of this.

Personally, I don't want a "BlackBerry", as I am not fond of the platform. It sucks. But, when it comes to keeping up on email, it's better than nothing. I've had BlackBerries on previous jobs, and if I don't want to be bothered by it, I shut it off or leave it in another room. During work hours, it stays on my belt. Outside of work hours, I use it only if and when I decide to. I am in charge; not the device. The same goes for my Note 5. If I hear a chime, I decide if I want to know what it is. If it's important to me, I deal with it. If not, I deal with it if and when I decide to.

I've never understood what is so hard about that for some people.

Mike Cernovich has a good post up on the subject:
Eliminate your illusion of self-importance. You think answering emails and texts right away makes you important. Does it?
Ask yourself this: Does Warren Buffett look down at his phone constantly to ensure he gets back to people right away and is super responsive? When Steve Jobs was alive, did he have to respond to email and Facebook statuses and messages?
When you are truly important, you can respond to people if and when you feel like it.
Being on-call 24/7 makes you feel important. That’s an illusion. Being connected non-stop is slavery.
Go without answering texts and emails for a day. People will get angry at you. How dare they? What mindset motivates people to believe they must have their emails answered on their terms?
Exactly. Entitlement. People believe they own you.
Set yourself free.
Mike hits the nail on the head. Being connected is supposed to be your power. Not somebody else's. Exercise some self-discipline. That email, voice mail, text, or reply on your Facebook post will still be there when you decide to get around to it. If you decide. Ask yourself: who is in charge, you, or your phone notifications? If the notifications are in charge, you need to reevaluate your life.
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