“They say that time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” ~Andy Warhol
Anyone who has spent anytime with media, social or otherwise, has heard that people are off the charts busy. We are working longer hours for extended periods of time and seem to have less “together time” with our loved ones. When we do get time together, work and other things that fill day-to-day lives seem to chew into that time.
Given the conditions of our frenetic pace, it’s not surprising we feel less connected than ever despite the seemingly unlimited options to connect. Being the adaptive animals that we are, couples have leveraged their digital choices. According to one study, couples send 1,002 texts and 400 emails per year and one in 10 couples talk primarily via email and phone.
We’re communicating, but are we REALLY communicating in a connected way?
Steph and Jason’s communication challenge
Looking up at the clock, Steph sighed to herself. She had hours of work ahead of her before she could get home. She and Jason had planned several dinners in a row, but one or the other of them had to reschedule because of work. Both of them were going into the busiest time of the year in their work, and every year they were overly optimistic about having any quality time. They’d make it through this intense time again, but Steph wanted to try something different this time. Hmmm… What are the options?
Stimulate me with pictures
While the volume of email and texting is testimony enough of the comfort couples now have with communicating through digital means, some have moved beyond words and have gotten pretty creative with pictures and video. As a matter of fact, researchers found that women have really embraced sharing technology and even prefer it when being flirty and sexual with their partner. Maybe that’s part of the reason women send twice as many texts as men. The extra layer may give them a sense of security that makes them feel just a little bit bolder and more confident.
Although texting and email are very convenient, there is a high risk of misunderstanding each other. With one fifth of people admitting to misunderstanding their partner’s texts or emails, there’s a lot of room for unnecessary escalation. Some have turned to text-based emoticons and acronyms, but that even falls short.
Why? I think it’s because most of us are visual and we have deep emotional connections to colors, symbols, and shapes. When we see a beautiful picture on Pinterest, watch a video in Facebook or YouTube, or even use a colorful, descriptive Tokii mood icons, it reaches beyond our rational brain to a more primitive space within the limbic brain where our emotions and memories live. This is why we spend time looking at our photo albums and the photos of others, scroll through the gorgeous pages of Pinterest or Flipboard, or linger with someone’s new and improved Facebook wall. The visual aspect makes us feel more connected to it. It feels more like a personalized experience.
Steph and Jason were old hats at texting and using email to stay connected, and while it was really convenient, over the years it had gotten dull and felt uninspired. “Bound to happen when familiarity sets in,” she had to admit. For a while they actively used the “Poke” app in Facebook, and while they still used it, the exchanged had slowed down a lot.
Steph wanted something new, visually appealing, and stimulating. She wanted to pick an image quickly that clearly conveyed her mood and gave her the option to personalize it with her thoughts. She used Facebook a lot because it was convenient and she and Jason tended to keep up with each other there. “Any new apps there I can use?” She clicked on Facebook to find out.
Tokii’s Mood Meter Facebook app – dynamic status update
Tokii has done it again. With the Mood Meter in Tokii.com they offered couples a visually stimulating, interactive solution for a couple to share what they are feeling in more relevant ways. Then they updated and added new moods and visual options to the Mood Meter and launched it in their mobile app. Now Tokii is giving Steph and Jason an even more convenient way to flirt, play, and share what they are feeling through the Mood Meter Facebook app.
Steph and Jason and others can finally have an interactive, solution well beyond Poke and Status Update that cuts a straighter path to the pleasure centers of the brain because it’s more visual and dynamic. The simple interface can reduce risk for misunderstanding and gives couples a more personalized way to share how they are feeling.
What are you feeling? Use the Mood Meter in Facebook to let ‘em know!
Alison has a Masters of Education degree in clinical counseling & a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. As a Licensed Professional Counselor for a number of years, she worked with individuals, couples, & families on relationship issues, depression, anxiety, & addiction and has published extensively about these subjects in several mediums and publications.