Technology Kills Patience: The Generation that Does Not Wait

How many of us are still willing to sit for at least thirty minutes to be served with whatever we want in a restaurant? How many of us are willing to start from the bottom then work our way to the top or to be patient to get a promotion? Just how many of us are still willing to wait? Almost no one. Technology has truly killed our patience.

The Fault in Our Thinking

What you will notice when looking around is that we have already bred a generation of kids who are spending almost all day tinkering on their phones and computers playing online games and not banking much on actual physical play. Teenagers who always feel victimized and think that social media platforms are for outrage, believing that disrespect is power. Young professionals who deem themselves unsuccessful and, finally, adults who feel entitled to belittle service personnel as apparently they have accomplished too much and they ought to be served hands down.

We are not saying that all of us have become like this, however, if we look at different factors that contribute to this type of mindset, we can actually put our fingers down on technology and recent developments.

What Technology Should be vs. What it Has Become

A lot of technology has been developed in order to industrialize countries.

If you look at reports that aim to rationalize a government’s effort to develop the industrial sectors and its impact on economic growth, the different charts and research summaries will tell you one thing: with industrialization comes the eradication of poverty. But for this to take effect, we would need to invent systems to hasten our processes and communication.

If you look at its varying definitions, you would realize that industrialization is supposedly the social and economic transformation of society. Moreover, technically, it is the type of growth that focuses on manufacturing and production. But more than just industrialization that would create more jobs for people and would generate income, we have also developed ways for us to allegedly increase social interaction. We eventually invented better communication systems that led to all the advancements we experience now.

Times are Changing

However, this technology has permeated so much into our lives that we no longer notice that we have relied too much on it and the ease it provides. Children no longer imagine, they just watch. Teenagers no longer attend parties, they watch it on screen, young adults no longer have the patience to wait in line, they want short-orders, elders want grandchildren to talk to but all they have is chat boxes.

All because of technology that taught us to accomplish a lot in little time – multiple tabs open at the same time, multiple chats in one box – we have adapted that to our real life. We got so used to transactions at the touch of a button that we lost our ability to wait. As a result, people deem waiting as a sign of a failed service from any industry when, in fact, time is entailed by any processes.

Killed Patience: Why We Hate to Wait

People nowadays are impatient. As such, ask any customer service representative. What they would tell you is that people will complain about purported long waiting times when their patience had run out after waiting only 10 minutes.

We can attribute this to one common theory: the theory of relativity. In layman’s terms, it means our view of what is draggingly slow or fast depends on how we relate to the task or situation at hand. If we enjoy what is happening, times flies fast and if not, it simply doesn’t.

Perception of Waiting Periods

Some researchers suggest that is also applicable to our technological experiences. It was proposed that there are types of computer-related tasks that really seem to drag, especially if they are technically related. However, socially favorable activities online seem to do otherwise. Add to that the type of Internet connection one has. The faster it is, the more likely it creates the illusion of “extra time.” This leads to us being tricked into thinking that we are bored, hence, we would multitask to compensate for it. We got so used to this that we have acquired the feeling so much that we also take that to our real-life interactions. As a result, most people become short-tempered and impatient.

This is because technology gives everyone an instant gratification. This creates the expectation, especially in children, that anything needed should be and could be given and attended to immediately. And since real life does not work this way, it causes frustration.

It’s not you… or Maybe it is?

What we can get from this is that these negative effects to human behavior are not inherent but have been acquired. As such, if we want to fix this entitlement and impatient mindset, we would need to turn away from technology once in a while. We can no longer get rid of technology – that is virtually impossible – but we can take a rest from it and function as human as possible again.

About Patricia Abrihan

Patricia has always been inspired by the witty yet innocent voice of Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird that she believes that writing is able to revolutionize ideas of society. She is a former college instructor from the Philippines and is currently a freelance writer and blogger managing her portfolio. She is open to collaboration and also loves reading and watching movies.

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