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We are being bombarded with news about robots and new technology advancements. There’s an appliance for everything. Our phones know us better than our family. IT is definitely getting bigger and bigger with every day and technology’s role in our lives is increasing every day. Some people greet the change and they are excited to see what the future holds for us. Others still nostalgically remember the days when all you could do with cellphones was to text and make calls (maybe play the snake as well, but that was basically it). If you’re one of those who gets annoyed every time there’s a new piece of technology because now you have to learn to operate it all over again, you might have technophobia, and it may be affecting your job performance.
What is technophobia?
According to Fearof.net: “Technophobia is the constant and persistent fear of technology and, in greater depth, is defined as “the feeling of severe anxiety associated with using anything technologically advanced”. The word Technophobia is derived from Greek ‘Techne’ meaning “art, skill or craft” and phobos meaning ‘fear or aversion’.”
This may come as surprise, but people seem to fear technology more than they’re afraid of flying or being assaulted by someone they know.
Okay, so now that you have the definition what does that have to do with you and your job performance?
People who experience this phobia are reluctant to use technology in general, but especially the new technology. However, many workplaces require you to keep up with the technology advancements. If you are hesitant to jump on the bandwagon, your boss may be dissatisfied.
Most common phrase technophobes use is: “Well I managed without it until now, so why so I need it now?” (and various versions of that). The reason your boss might be dissatisfied is that probably every boss wants the employees to be adaptable to new circumstances so the company can grow and advance. They might see you as the one that’s putting the breaks on company’s rise.
Why is that so?
Reasons for this fear can be various. Popular culture hasn’t done us favor with many sci-fi films and books that portray the future as an apocalypse led by robots that have gone on a wild rampage against humanity.
Some people fear that they are going to be redundant if the technology continues evolving this fast. They fear being laid off because probably a lot of jobs that we know them as they are will become extinct one day.
Others fear that they will seem ignorant by not being able to understand the new technology and that they will be perceived as less intelligent. They are convinced that it learning the new system will take up too much time and energy and find it easier to ignore the new advancement, rather than learning how to deal with it.
What to do?
It depends on what are your reasons for this fear of technology, but the fear mostly comes because of the unknown. People that believe that they will get replaced by machines should think about all the new jobs that will be available that still don’t exist. The market is constantly changing and we need to keep up. Think about all the jobs that didn’t exist 15 years ago, but we have them now. The trends are changing and the need for new professions is constant. Rejecting the new technology isn’t likely to stop it, you’re just making things more difficult for yourself.
If your fear is starting to affect your life to great lengths, it may be the best thing to talk about it with a professional. However, if you’re feeling discomfort, discuss it with people you’re close with and try to rationalize your fear. Think about the loss and the gain. Don’t let your fear affect your job performance.