Have people forgotten how to be people in public?

I’ve noticed a shift in society lately. After 18ish months of strange isolation, and disconnection, people have forgotten how to “people”. It seems that few are willing to stop to let someone pass, few are willing to hold a door open for people coming behind them, few are willing to step aside to let those on an elevator off before trying to get on themselves and few are actually paying attention to what others are saying and doing and are way to eager to get their own needs met. What is happening?

Perhaps polite, kind behaviour is practiced, and maybe we are out of practice. And distracted?? While in public, many people are so busy looking at their phones, that they are not looking up to notice that they are in the company of others. It seems that people are tethered to thier phones, but not connected to the world around them.

We may think that tethered and connected are the same, but I propose they are almost polar opposites. Connection takes presence, it takes awareness, and it takes the practice of knowing where one is in time and space, which can only happen when one is not being distracted and when focus is not completely absorbed in a technological device.

So for a bit of time today, put the phone/ device away, pay attention to where you are in time and space, who is nearest to you at any moment and enjoy the magic that comes from the possibility of an actual connection that can enhance your experience… IRL.

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