Is your smartphone causing you stress? Find out how to navigate your gadget addiction.
As we spend more time on our devices, they are becoming a source of stress. We are constantly checking our messages, notifications and social media updates. We never feel fully present. But what can we do about it?
A new report by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) shows that technology is indeed making us more stressed out than ever before. The study finds that individuals who use their smartphones heavily often feel powerless to control their behavior and experience a lack of satisfaction in their lives.
“It’s like there’s this other person in the room with you,” says Dr. Mark Matell, one of the authors of the report and director of the NIMH Media Lab, “and you’re constantly reminded that he or she is there.”
It’s hard to imagine how we would function in a world without smartphones. They’re so much a part of our daily lives that it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly when they appeared. But, as with all things technological, there is a time and a place for our gadgets and they should not be used constantly.
In his book, iDisorder: Understanding Our Obsession with Technology and Overcoming Its Hold on Us, Dr Larry Rosen discusses the ill effects of our addiction to technology. “We have no idea how much stress we create by constantly checking our smartphones,” explains the author, who is also a psychologist at California State University. “This continuous distraction can make us more anxious than we think – especially if you’re expecting an important message or call.”
The good news is that there are steps you can take to prevent your smartphone from causing you undue stress. Here are some tips from Mental Health America:
Limit your screen time: It can be hard to put your smartphone down when you know it’s always buzzing with activity or notifications. Set aside specific times each day when you will check your email and social media accounts, and stick to it. If possible, find some time during the
If you’re reading this on your phone, congratulations. You’re officially addicted to technology.
While it’s not a real addiction, it’s certainly an unhealthy obsession for many of us. I myself have often been guilty of sitting at the dinner table with people that I love and looking at my phone instead of engaging in conversation with them. It’s rude, obnoxious and an all around terrible thing to do to someone who cares about you.
In today’s day and age, we always feel as though we need to be connected to everyone and everything at all times via our phones or computers. If we don’t respond to every tweet or comment on Facebook immediately, we feel like we’ve failed somehow. It’s a truly ridiculous way to live your life!
When did we become so obsessed with technology? I honestly can’t remember a time when I didn’t have a cell phone; I’m sure they were around before my time, but the way that technology has advanced in the past decade is astonishing. Our phones can now tell us where to go, take pictures and movies, connect us with social media sites and more…all while making calls!
It’s pretty amazing what these gadgets can do. But it has come at a cost: our sanity! We need to
For those of us who can remember life before the smartphone, it is easy to see how the constant pull of technology has changed our lives in both positive and negative ways.
In many ways, I am grateful for technology.
I love that I can text my friends to get together. I love that I can connect with family even when we are far apart. And there are times when being able to get instant answers through Google makes me feel superhuman.
But as a physician, I also have witnessed the negative impact technology has had on individuals.
You’re at dinner with friends, and you hear a buzzing sound. It’s coming from your pants pocket. You know it’s your phone, but why is it buzzing? You’re expecting a text message, but only from one person. Is this the message you’ve been waiting for? Your heart beats faster as you reach for your phone.
You check and see that the message is not from who you were hoping. With a sigh of relief, you put your phone away and return to your conversation.
But wait—what if that person sends a text message in the next few minutes? You’ve already looked at your phone once, so maybe it’s okay to look again. Your hand slips into your pocket once more. No new messages. You hope nobody noticed you looking again and try to return to the conversation. But now you’re even more distracted because all sorts of thoughts are racing through your mind:
“When will I get a text message?” “What if I don’t get one?” “Maybe there was an important reason why I wasn’t texted.” And finally: “I wonder what other people are up to.”
The Anxiety Cycle
Our smartphones are wonderful devices that let us communicate with friends, family and coworkers whenever we want. But they can
It’s 8 PM on a Wednesday night, and you’ve been staring at your laptop for hours.
You open Snapchat to see what your friends are up to, only to find yourself scrolling through your Instagram feed. The next thing you know, you look up from your screen and realize it’s 11 PM. How did this happen? You promised yourself that you would spend less time on your phone this week.
It’s not just you. Our phones have become an extension of ourselves and we can’t seem to put them down. In fact, most of us spend more time with our phones than we do with our friends, family or partners. Because of this, smartphones are now one of the most frustrating things about modern life. Here’s why:
1) They distract us from meaningful face-to-face interactions
2) They cause us to be forgetful
3) They make us feel lonely even when we are surrounded by people