Tag Archives: #HIT

Disconnection In A Connected World

This morning as I woke up and began my day, I noticed this tweet that came across my feed from one of my friends.

It happened to be about a body being found in a 55-gallon drum in the San Diego Bay. (story here)

The question asked is what is going on in the world?

It made me pause for a moment and contemplate the question.

If we live in a world of mobile, that is always on, always plugged in, and always connected, then why are there so many horrendous violent acts occurring?

If you have ever heard Simon Sinek discuss the topic of our reactions to the rings, dings, pings, and other things of our cell phones, you will understand that we are being trained to crave the same numbing dopamine response as alcoholics seek in order to manage their career, financial, or social stresses. (Video here)

Our kids, our young adults, and adults are becoming addicted to our phones in order to cope with the stresses of life.

We are becoming a nation hardwired to seek the artificial coping mechanism of our devices instead of the humans that surround us.

Yet since the beginning of human-kind, it has been the ability to connect to those we love, we break bread, we pray, we work and create with that have always helped us manage the emotional stress of life.

So I ponder…

 “…in a world in which we drive to place a cell phone in everyone’s hand on the promise to “connect” everyone in the world, are we merely scaling disconnection?”

Is it the simple fact that the artificial connections via FaceBook, Instagram, SnapChat, Twitter, Music.ly, Tumblr and others alike make it easier for the enraged/ill/or other to disconnect from their own humanity and choose the atrocities of recent?

I am not sure if there is a right answer.

Or at least there is not a wrong answer.

There definitely is not an absolute answer.

What I do know is that when I come into contact with another human I do my best to remove my phone from the situation.

I make eye contact (as long as that is the acceptable social norm in that part of the world) and I focus on the words, the dialogue, and forming a connection with another human.

Because humans like us, do things like this.

I know how wonderful it feels when someone takes the time to listen to me.

To acknowledge my thoughts, my feelings, and my lens.

I, in turn, try to do the same for those I am fortunate enough to encounter during my journey in life.

We are infatuated with technology’s ability to scale, yet there is only one me, one Andy, one Cancergeek.

I simply cannot scale myself.

This is why all 110K plus tweets, posts, direct messages, and pictures have all been done by me.

This is why I respond to all messages. This is my rationale for putting my email out there for anyone to contact. It is why I ask to speak to people on the phone.

Because connection, trust, and relationships can only be built by humans.

It can only be built at the N of 1.

As always feel free to email me at cancergeek@gmail.com or follow me on Twitter as @cancergeek



Ignore The Banter v2017

Seth Godin refers to it as the lizard brain.

Steven Pressfield has named it the resistance.

Some people on social media refer to it as the noise.

I refer to it as the banter.

That little voice you hear in your mind questioning your thoughts and ideas.

The banter. 

Will anyone care about my post?

Is my idea too radical? Am I being polarizing?

Will my peers still respect me?

Am I being too transparent? Am I not protecting my privacy?

Will people understand my point of view?

Did I proofread, edit, revise, and polish my post so that it is perfect?

For the past few weeks, I have allowed the banter to get the best of me.

I allowed all the naysayers, doubters, peers, and friendly colleagues’ opinions to cloud my own judgment.

I took their commentary, their questions, their opinions and their mentoring and allowed it to steer me down a pathway to silence.

A dark place.

A place of quiet.

A place in which the banter continues to scream questions trying to inflict self-doubt of my ideas, my thoughts, and my vision.

Then something happened.

I was standing in front of my mirror and it reminded me of a poem. A poem that my father gave me a long time ago. (The Man In The Glass)

I pulled it out and there was the one sentence I needed….

And you’ve passed your most dangerous difficult test
if the man in the glass is your friend…

I realized that I wasn’t currently friends with the reflection in the mirror.

I had been ignoring him. I hadn’t spoken to him in weeks. I hadn’t gone out for a walk, gotten drinks, written a note, or shared any of my thoughts with him.

I had ditched my best friend, the reflection in the mirror, for a bunch of opinions from people that haven’t known me as long.

So this is my way of reminding myself to ignore the banter.

To listen and then just as quick to forget.

To listen to the soft whisper of my heart, where my friend resides, and where my truth lies.

Ignore the banter. Listen to the whisper.

Care happens at the N of 1.

I am the one.

As always feel free to email me at cancergeek@gmail.com or follow me on Twitter as @cancergeek