On Valentine’s Day my husband gave me this tiny piece of artwork to put on my desk—something to make me laugh. Do you know what it says? It says, “Love you more than my iPhone.” Honesty, it had me cracking up because if the two of us aren’t mindful about our habits, someone can definitely be left feeling like they are competing with the iPhone for some love.
Technology is an amazing thing. It allows you to stay connected to people miles away, form great friendships with people you have never met in person, and even launch businesses that you can operate from anywhere in the world that has internet access. There is no denying the fact that technology offers us countless opportunities, and because of the kind of work I do, I am incredibly grateful for all the technological advancements we all enjoy.
But, as with all great things, technology also comes with many pitfalls, and if we are not mindful and responsible about how we use it, it can cause serious trouble. Technology can lead to job loss, damaged friendships, destroyed marriages, and parenting mistakes if used irresponsibly. Technology can also become a major distraction—sometimes even an obsession—that has an impact on how we interact with the people in our lives that matter most. The amount of time we spend on technology, when we choose to use it, and what we choose to use it for are all things that can have a powerful impact on our marital satisfaction.
The problem with technology is that the negative affects can creep up on you. Maybe you are an entrepreneur with the best intentions, but checking your email and updating social media platforms has taken over your life. Maybe you have a demanding career and you are glued to your laptop every night because you bring work home with you. Or maybe you are currently unhappy with your marriage and technology serves as an easy distraction from reality. Whatever your reasons might be, when your spouse starts to feel like the devices in your life are more important that they are, you definitely have a problem on your hands. And if you are married, you know very well that marital problems rarely (if ever) just disappear. They linger and become even bigger problems when you don’t address them.
So how can you tell if technology is killing your marriage? Here are a few indicators:
- 1. You text your mate more than you talk to them.
- 2. It’s not uncommon to fall asleep with a smart phone, tablet or laptop on the bed.
- 3. You spend more time surfing the web than spending quality time with your mate.
- 4. When you watch television with your mate, your eyes keep drifting back and forth between your device and the TV.
- 5. You keep your smart phone in the kitchen during meal times.
- 6. You check your phone whenever an alert goes off—even if your mate is in the middle of talking.
- 7. When you wake up in the morning, checking email is the very first thing you do.