We’ve all noticed the damaging effect of screen addiction on human beings.
Or, maybe not all of us dare to accept what our intuition tells us that it’s leading us to a damaging future.
It’s because most of us are already submerged to the habit – because yes, it is very addicting!
I blame screens and social media addiction as one of the significant causes of depression.
Screens and social media addiction makes us perfectionists.
As I have mentioned in another blog, The Cure to Depression in This Fast-Paced Modern Life, technology is training people’s minds to want things to be fast.
But, taking control of the advancing technology is seemingly impossible because the world is always evolving.
Instead, we take control of ourselves.
It all starts within us.
To do that, we start by having awareness and understanding further why social media and screen addiction is an issue.
Here are the eight reasons why you should stop screen and social media addiction before it’s too late:
1. PRODUCTIVITY KILLER
I listened to Dr. Adam Alter’s podcast in the Calm meditation, and he shared what he found on a survey he did on his students of how much time they spend on their screens. He let them download an app called “Moment” and track their time usage for over six weeks. The majority of his students spend 6-9 hours a day; some of them even spend 10-11 hours a day.
Imagine you add all those hours up for 12 months. Say you spend 9 hours a day, that’s 270 hours a month and 3,240 hours a year. Imagine how much we could’ve done in a year if we spend the time on meaningful things instead of binging on screen.
2. IT CAN STEAL AWAY YOUR CHANCES OF STILLNESS AND CREATIVITY
In times of boredom, say you are waiting for your ordered meal in a fancy restaurant, most of us get our phone out of the pocket or bag to kill time. It happens in almost all areas, in waiting-lines or elevators. People check their phones regardless of no notifications, to kill time.
In these times of idleness, our best and most interesting ideas come out. Our most creative mind comes from these times of silence and boredom. These are the moments when we are not thinking; we are in our instincts. These are the times our intuition comes naturally.
When you’re bored, and you take out your phone to binge the screen, you’ll kill away the chances of creativity, your mind will already be working on your screen, and you lose all those ideas that are supposed to give you your most creative instincts.
3. IT CAN HAVE THE BIGGEST EFFECT IN YOUR PSYCHOLOGICAL EXPERIENCE
There’s a concept in Psychology called “Propinquity,” which means the state of being close to someone or something. It suggests that the things that are closest to you in physical space have the most significant effect on your psychological experience. Most of us sleep with our phones beside our bed. No matter where you are, your phone is reachable at all times.
Let me ask you. If you have to choose between the two; would you rather have your finger broken? Or would you rather have your phone broken? Be honest with your answer, no one else can hear you anyway but yourself. If your answer is the first one, you should be alarmed.
4. IT CAN BE HARD TO RESIST
Have you noticed when you watch a TV Show, at the end of an episode, there will always be a “click bite” scenes that urge you to watch another episode?
The same goes for social media; you keep getting notifications to attract you to visit the site over and over again until it becomes a habit that you will look for it, making you search for ways to get those notifications (e.g., photo likes, post comments, and other interactions).
5. PHYSICAL INACTIVITY IS UNHEALTHY TO THE WELL BEING OF THE BODY
By spending more time on screen or social media, we will have much less time on physical movements. Physical inactivity or decreased physical activity is unhealthy to the well being of the body, and it is shown to be a risk factor to many conditions such as cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, and obesity – which can also lead to mental health issues.
6. IT CAN DECREASE YOUR FOCUS
We all noticed the increasing numbers of people using their phones while doing something else; such as driving while texting and checking social media notifications while walking on the street.
When I listened to Tamara Levitt in one of her guided meditation, she discussed it clearly that multi-tasking is a myth and is a road to misunderstanding. It can be helpful to save time, but it can also decrease our concentration and ability to focus. Human nature can only focus on one task at a time.
7. ATTRACTIVE TO CHILDREN
Screen addiction will have a severe impact on children because of the vulnerability of their minds. If an adult is constantly using screens, the child paying a lot of attention to adults will follow what they tend to do in their daily activities. Instead of letting them spend time on screen, give them toys for more physical movements and allow them to play with other children.
8. IT CAN DETERIORATE SOCIAL LIFE
In times of gathering with friends and family, a lot of us habitually go to our screens instead of enjoying the moment and paying attention to those people around you – this leads our mind thinking that those people who aren’t there are more important than those people in actual.
Screen addiction slows down social development. When we use social media, it takes time for us to type a message, or comment on a post, or respond to a chat. That is a hundred times slower than socializing in actual. There is nothing wrong with social media to connect with others who are in the distance, but we have to have control of how much time we spend on the screens.
I’m not encouraging you not to use screens and social media anymore.
It can have significant advantages in our daily lives too.
We only have to use them wisely and not allow these things to take control of us.
We take control of them.
Healthy living in all aspects – physical, social, psychological, spiritual – doesn’t just happen; it takes practice.
To discipline yourself and start practicing, you have to know the right steps and strategies.
Because if not, even if you are eager to change, you will likely lose track of your goal and give up.
On my next blog, I will share with you how I managed screen and social media addiction the right way.
I know it’ll work for you because it did for me.
Remember that we can’t change the world, but by changing ourselves will influence others to improve themselves – and that will lead to a better world.
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