The world is becoming technological than ever. Younger generations see the value of technology but some boomers still haven’t adapted to it. Until recently, it wasn’t even a part of their daily lives.
Do you and your parents battle over technology constantly? I hear from you! A few years ago, I had to convince my parents to get Charter cable Internet for home use. Now, I am struggling to explain to them how to use a Firestick. It’s one thing to teach them how to use it and another to explain the value offered by it.
However, through trial and error, I have come up with tips for helping my parents gain a better appreciation for technology. And I’m sure these will help you too…
Please know that you will be dealing with a lot of frustration. You will have to repeat yourself more than twice but you must try to keep your cool. Our parents didn’t grow up with technology like us. They used to communicate with landline phones. Our generation and their generation are very different. Try appreciating where they are coming from which may help the two of you get through it with ease.
Our parents don’t have a real appreciation for technology because they don’t understand its benefits. They only think it has got us hooked to screens and to ignore face to face communication. I don’t really blame them because that’s what they see all day.
Therefore, make it your mission to teach them the value technology has to offer. Let them know it’s more than just a means of communicating with your friends and family. Explain to them how you can use technology to access information without leaving the room. Show them how you are using technology for studying or at work. Let them see the other side and it will be the first step in changing their minds.
Don’t bombard them with information, especially extra information. They don’t need to know how a router works or who supplies the Internet. Don’t throw unfamiliar phrases at them. If their phone crashes, just ask them to press the required button to fix everything.
You have to be slow when teaching your parents how to use a new app or their smartphone, to begin with. Don’t throw instructions at them and expect them to understand everything just like that. You have to communicate properly and in some cases by practical.
Use the language they understand to make them relate to the stuff you are teaching. Remember, they will get a hang of it eventually.
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I am sure you have so many tech phrases and slangs on your tongue. Don’t forget your parents are not familiar with them. You might call it text and they call it SMS message. I can name so many examples like this. Trust me, there’s no point in correcting them. Let them use the words they are most comfortable with.
Just words are not enough and video is not suited for every task. You could be great at making videos but your parents could be the type of people who prefer reading.
It’s best to provide written instructions. Create short steps. When you are writing instructions, keep in mind they are for the people who are complete novices. So don’t miss the nitty-gritty details.
It’s your job to empower them. Once you have taught them something new, offer them a chance to use it on their own. This will improve their confidence in their own abilities.
When they will do it on their own, it will be a different experience. Make sure you stand by to offer any help necessary.
This is extremely crucial. It’s a good time to let them know that a password123 is not a good password.
Along with this, make them aware of phishing scams. Make it clear that they are not supposed to share their banking information, SSN or any other credentials through email, text message or call.
Ok, there are so many things that you shouldn’t talk about. Examples:
And the list goes on…
Sure our parents need to know about technology but some information could be too much for them. It’s not worth your or their time. Let all such stuff go. Sometimes, ignorance can be bliss.
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You will have to repeat yourself often. Imagine you are teaching a little kid. When you do that, keep the first tip in mind.
Technology has benefits for people of all ages. It can be daunting to get your parents on-board with technology but it’s not impossible. By following these tips, you can teach them how to appreciate this gift. My next mission is teaching my folks how to use the Spectrum app on FireStick. I hope it all works fine. They have improved so much and I am sure they’ll get it as well.
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