Monday, August 4, 2014

Our One Click Culture

We are always looking for signs that we are acquiescing to the craziness of this one-click culture. When we adhere to the notion that there is something out there to chase, we lose perspective, make choices against our better judgment, and ultimately we get careless.

    This is as true of teens as it is for us. We all want, and seem to need, quick fixes. But are quick fixes always the best way to proceed? I believe that these quick fixes can lead to a lot of difficulties for us and our family. But what’s more by relying on quick fixes, we are teaching our kids that they should expect these fixes to make them happy and fulfilled.

    This mindset can create a lot of difficulties for our kids later on in life too. They will not only rely on quick fixes but they will expect them. Not only that, but there will always be something out there that they will be chasing to find happiness and contentment. And this is where the main difficulty comes in. When we search for things outside of us to make us content and fulfilled, we will constantly be searching and never quite finding what will make us happy. This can set up a malaise and unhappiness that is running rampant in our society today.

    Thus, it is imperative for parents to change this mindset in themselves first. Many times, our kids mimic our behaviours and actions. If we go for quick fixes and count on them, so will our kids. However, if we teach our kids the short-term nature of quick fixes, we will be teaching them to look beyond these quick fixes to something that is much more permanent and long-term.

    Here are a few ways that parents can show their kids how not to rely on the one-click culture of quick fixes.

1.    Show your kids the importance of looking to make their own choices, based on their own values and not on those of the culture that they live in. This can be hard to do at first because the media is everywhere and your kids are constantly plugged in. But it can be done with a bit of persistence and mostly through an example of good action and behaviour by the parents.

2.    Show your kids that quick fixes don’t give long-term happiness. Quick fixes yield quick results, and quick results are not usually permanent and very short lived. These quick fixes can further frustrate your child and make them feel depressed and out of control, leading to a lack of fulfillment and an overall malaise.

3.    Show your kids the importance of turning inward and developing their own perspectives. If they need to make a decision, they should rely on the values that the parents instilled in them to make a wholesome and balanced decision, one that does not depend on anything or anyone outside of them.

4.    Show your children through your actions that there is nothing out there that can make them happy or fulfilled. Instead, fulfillment and contentment can only be developed from the inside. This will give your children a sense of where they have to turn when they want to feel more in control and fulfilled.

By following these tips, we will be showing our kids how to become happier and more fulfilled. But more than that, our kids may not be as careless, depressed and unhappy if we, as parents, can show them the importance of turning inward and not outward.  And who knows, we may turn around one day and see our kids unplugging from that one-click culture that they believed was so meaningful to them in the first place. 

Irene S. Roth
The Empowerment Show Host 

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