With Mother’s Day almost upon us, we are reminded that is a holiday for reconnecting with our mothers and, in effect, allowing us to also reunite with our entire family. It is a day we stop and thank our mother for all she has shared with us throughout our life, the gifts–both physical and emotional–she has given us, and for “just” being our mother.
But HOW do YOU reconnect with your mom on Mother’s Day?
Do you send her an email or a text? How about a shout-out via Twitter or post your thanks and endearing love on Facebook?
Around 1980, AT&T had the marketing slogan “Reach out and touch someone.” Although using your AT&T smartphone today to wish your mother a happy Mother’s Day fits well with their marketing plan, it is not what they intended for you to do then. Rolling back the clock to 1979, we find that Americans had begun to travel more and more away from their homes, moving to new cities, states across the U.S. AT&T wanted to capitalize on the distance between daughters and sons from their mothers by encouraging them to call their mother on the telephone–long-distance charges may apply.
Although “Reach out and touch someone” was a marketing campaign, the psychological roots behind it are sound and even more important in today’s world with larger distances between families and increased access to technology.
Research has shown how technology can interfere with our social connections and hamper our ability to share meaningful relationships with those around us. Look no further than the table next to you or across the room next time you are at any type of restaurant. How many individuals at that table are actually making eye-contact and talking directly to the others, compared to those looking at the screen of their phone or tablet?
As social acceptability of technology and interactions expands, we come back to Mother’s Day and how we choose to share it with our mother and our family.
Consider the importance of actually being there in person to share an hour, a meal or the day with your mother. If you cannot be there physically, then consider how you send her the message of wishing her a happy Mother’s Day.
Will you call her or make the effort to video chat with her? Or will it be less personal by mailing her a card or sending a message via some technological tool that does not allow her to hear your voice or see your bright shining face?
I vote for the personal touch – it means so much to her and will to you as well. Happy Mother’s Day to my mom, I will see you at noon on Sunday!
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