Savour the Moment – and the Memory

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Don’t let the Smartphone take over your life, says Bob.

In today’s 24-hour digital world, with continuous social feeds, I am eternally grateful – as indeed has been echoed by several Instagram posts I’ve seen lately – that I grew up in the non-Smartphone era.

Thankfully the various mishaps, stupidities and faux pas of my youth are safely ensconced in my memory, only to be shared as a dinner party anecdote or during family and friends reunions, rather than being viewed by strangers on social channels. However, I do know that the danger is still out there. I definitely need to rein in my Dad Dancing tendencies at any parties!

The Omnipresent Smartphone

Naturally I consider my Smartphone to be as indispensable as the next person. But I still worry that sometimes its omnipresence and ability to capture every moment, however small, has a detrimental effect, particularly on how we react to, interact with and experience things.

Of course, taking photos and videos didn’t start with the Smartphone. Previously, as well as cameras, we had camcorders and, before that, cine cameras (although they were too expensive for most of us). But the action of taking a photograph or filming was not as easy as a quick click on a phone. Nor were we able to see the results straight away. We had to take our films down to our local Boots (other Chemists are available) and wait a couple of days for the photos to be developed.

Mind you, that did contribute to a feeling of excitement (and sometimes trepidation) when we finally clutched our envelope of prints in our hands!

Making Memories

I know using our Smartphones is about creating and sharing memories, and isn’t a new concept either. Where today we scroll through our photos on our Smartphone, in years gone by, we would pour over numerous photo albums. And photos of course provide the triggers to help us remember.

Nevertheless, we can end up being so ‘digitally focused’ on taking the right photo, the best selfie, the most interesting video clip, that we almost lose sight of why we are there and forget to enjoy the experience first-hand.

It’s the same with concerts and other live events. For me, they are much more enjoyable if you take in everything with your own eyes, rather than second hand through a screen.

The ‘A’ Word

It all seems a bit artificial. And what can be more artificial than being prompted by our tablet, Smartphone or Facebook page to recall a particular memory?

As our late Queen observed, ‘recollections may differ’, and memory is certainly not infallible, so we do need prompts to help us at times. But memory is also very powerful in its own right. Music is an excellent example. Many of my choices for our NM Songs of Week recall a particular time or event. For example, one of my recent selections was Jim Steinman’s Rock and Roll Dreams Come Through from his Bad for Good album. (Actually, it was a free 45rpm single included with the album – but I digress!)

I bought the record at the start of a new term at university, where my room had been painted over the holidays. When I listen to that record even today, I can almost still feel the smell of new paint in my nostrils, and I am transported back to the heady (and luckily not preserved forever on film) days of my youth.


I know I am edging towards the ‘grumpy old man’ mode that my NM colleagues are all too aware of. And I am honestly no technophobe. But when I see people walking down the street staring at their Smartphones or with earplugs in (and therefore paying no attention to the ‘Don’t Walk’ sign and stepping in front of my car when the lights are green – sorry GOM strikes again!), they seem so insular. And ironically in a world where staying connected is everything, so unconnected to the people and places around them.

I’ve already mentioned the ‘A’ word and have written about the drawbacks of AI in a previous blog. For PR and communications professionals, for whom the written word is their bread and butter, it is essential that we continue to inject some originality into our writing.

The requirements for business-to-business communications are no different to writing for other audiences. You need to be able to engage with the reader, whether that be an editor or target customer, attract their attention, and create enough interest for them to keep on reading.

Verbalise the Moment

It’s a skill that we need to keep practising. And I often find that trying to analyse and describe feelings and experiences as they happen – verbally or in my head, there is no need to write everything down – is a great way to help keep my writing fresh.

So, every time you grab your Smartphone to make a memory, try to make the most of the moment as well. It could make the memory all the sweeter!
Talk to the team about how to capture your ‘moments’ by contacting us today.





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