She’s supposed to be studying for her exam, but instead she’s all over her sleek Android phone, moving from WhatsApp to Twitter and then she segues smoothly to Facebook, and she finally spends close to an hour on Instagram. She checks out people’s stories on Snapchat, and then she reads a page of her Criminal Law pamphlet. She yawns. This is boring work. Then she moves back to Instagram. Double Tap. Comment. Giggle. Cute dress. Sumptuous heels. Double Tap. By the time she realizes it is 12am and she hasn’t even gone halfway through her book. She has procrastinated studying this pamphlet for the whole semester and now she has some few hours to write her paper. She sighs. She’s done what she can, she consoles herself and then she mutters a prayer and goes to bed. God is in control, she tells herself.
Hours later, she is chewing the end of her pen, clueless even about the question, and her mind wanders to that slinky red number Joselyn Dumas posted on Instagram that dawn. She’s confused. It is when the invigilator barks, “Stop Work!”, that she realizes most of her answers are doused in shorthand, and she’s not sure whether her law lecturer will pardon her for that.
She thinks of all the opportunities she had to study but she was busy texting or reading about other people’s lives on Facebook. Then it sinks in that the social media has taken over her life, and she promises herself she would study for the next paper. But it continues in a pathetic cycle and every single time she has to make up an excuse for why she has been failing her courses. Sadly, this won’t be the last course she fails.
It is great to be abreast of international affairs, to know exactly what is happening in every nook and cranny of this world. At the touch of a button, we can connect to myriads of people, even friends and family scattered all over the world. Some of these websites and applications enlighten us. This is the time to learn more than ever, because a lot of information is at our disposal. It all seems exciting. You are still in awe of how easily you can get a response to everything you post online, be it pictures or your thoughts.
However have you asked yourself if you’re not being influenced negatively by the social media?
You text a lot. Yes, you do. You text so expertly your fingers can dance nimbly on your keyboard without you having to look down at your phone. You are the meister of shorthand. Have you taken your time to consider how that is affecting the way you write? Is it making you lazy or it is actually making you type better? Habits are easily formed. You might be emailing your employer and your ‘Good morning’ could be easily substituted for ‘Gm’ and you would not even notice it. Do you know how that will affect the quality of your emails and your letters and the like? Before you scribble something and email it, do pause for a minute and read through. Make sure you have reviewed those words you tend to shorten before you hurriedly press send.
Before the advent of the social media some people could actually get some work done. Some people could hang out with their friends and actually talk. However, some people will work a little, take their phone, text and browse incessantly, and procrastinate the work they are supposed to get done. Of course some people’s works are internet related, so if they’re probably on their phone most of the time, it could be they are getting their job done. If you’re not doing that kind of job, why would you pick up your phone every few minutes and lose track of what you’re supposed to do? You should be aware of the message you’re sending to other people when you’re the kind who is always texting or browsing or double tapping to people’s pictures especially when you’re supposed to be doing something else. There is nothing wrong with prioritizing, and doing the most important things first. Besides the social media is here to stay, it is not going anywhere, so you should not abuse it.
To be continued in…….. 2/2
Author : Akua Serwaa Amankwah
Facebook: Akua Serwaa Amankwah,
Twitter handle: @i_akua