Wednesday Words of Wisdom: Capturing change

Politics of Experience

We live in a moment of history where change is so speeded up that we begin to see the present only when it is already disappearing.

R. D. Laing, The Politics of Experience

Many words have been published about how the pace of change in our world grows ever faster, but this particular quote from a book by Scottish psychiatrist R. D. Laing neatly sums up the futility of clinging on to the way things used to be. There is no point doing so when the world we know is already becoming redundant almost as soon as it happens.

To illustrate how much faster our world is changing, take a look at this graph which shows the time taken for major technological innovations to reach 50 million users globally.

techspreadScary, huh?

Rather than resisting change, we need to accept that it is inevitable and enjoy the ride for what it is.

Nowhere is this more true than in parenting. Our children grow up and evolve so quickly that it’s important to pay attention to what they are today, because by tomorrow they will have changed – sometimes in dramatic and unexpected ways. Blink and you’ll miss it.

This is one of the reasons I like social media so much. My blog and apps such as Facebook and Instagram are brilliant for capturing snapshots of those fleeting moments in time for posterity. Looking back at leisure, it’s easy to see how much my kids have changed over time – and how much they will continue to change in the future.

We can’t stop change. But we can capture it with an ease and speed which is unprecedented.

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