December 29, 2011

Resolve to make meaningful connections

Posted in Between Us column, Business, Employment, Entertainment, Health, Relationships at 6:04 pm by dinaheng

The future may be filled with technology-driven toys, but nothing will connect us more than personal interactions.

As the holiday season wanes, the kids are out of school and I’m working at Grandma’s house with a little babysitting thrown in. Today, I’m writing this on a laptop while my 7-year-old nephew Mark is watching a movie on an iPad, and his 10-year-old sister Emily is playing Angry Birds on her iPhone.

Yesterday, Emily and I spent much of the afternoon playing Monopoly on an old-fashioned board while Mark tossed a ball with me in between my dice throws. Whatever form the entertainment takes, we’re all hanging together in the same room, which is the real key to connectivity.

In an uncertain economy, adults are working harder than ever — to make ends meet and to stave off the fear of losing the jobs we have. People neglect their health and well being, going to work when they’re sick in order to “get things done,” no doubt infecting  co-workers in the process.

Co-workers and bosses e-mail colleagues when they’re on vacation, giving no real break from the work world. We may love our jobs, but what is the point of taking time off, if we can’t get away from the office?

Having little time to take care of things at home adds to the stress of everyday living, and cuts down even more on the meaningful connections in our lives. When there’s no time to return calls to friends, or lend a helping hand without feeling stressed, the heart is squeezed even more.

At the same time, kids are asking for more and more expensive toys, in the form of electronic devices that run the gamut from tablets to smartphones to video games. They love texting more than talking on the phone, and have to be told to put their phones away at the dinner table.

If using electronic devices becomes more interesting than spending time with human beings, we really need to look at the way we’re connecting — or not connecting — with others. There will always be new tech toys to buy. But you can’t buy lost time with the people you love.

As we ring in the new year, resolve to make more time for yourself. Eat healthier foods,  exercise more (even if only a little), get offline, and spend more face time with people. Your heart will feel the difference.



  1. Twenty years from now, will we be re-reading sentimental emails or tweets? No. We’ll cherish the memories of time we spent with people we loved. I keep finding birthday and Valentine cards from my husband or family members and they bring back lots of lovely memories.

  2. dinaheng said,

    I totally agree. That’s why I save those handwritten letters and greeting cards. 🙂

  3. John said,

    It’s nice to look back at those cards and letters and watch the hand writing..spelling..and grammar change over the years.
    Thanks for the post.

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