Sometimes it is important to realize that our lives can get a little too technical. Each day, we become more involved with our cell phones and the notifications and alerts seem to never end. There are even applications you can install on your phone to keep you from being distracted and help you be more productive.
The average person checks their cell phone anywhere from 50 to up to 300 times per day. According to some psychologists, the key to getting away from this “addiction” is to schedule a break in the action from time to time. These are what we are calling a digital “sanity breaks”.
The Addiction to Technology
How many times have you gone to a restaurant and noticed the people around you on their phones. They are sitting with friends and loved ones and not actually physically engaging with each other. This is a real problem in our society today because we are losing touch with our social selves. Our well-being is adversely affected. Nowadays, many of us have a need to feel engaged at all times via social media and other gadgets on our phones.
In South Korea, this type of behavior is considered a disease and treated by medical professionals. About 72 percent of children there under the age of 12 have their first smartphone. Here in the United States, 60% of college students consider themselves to have a cell phone addiction. No matter where you are you can see that the effect of this technology on everyone is troubling. People can become panicked and feel stressed when they are separated from their phones.
Practicing Healthy Digital Habits
Technology is great and allows us to communicate more freely. But, it can also be a reason why we can feel disconnected. As mentioned earlier, we can be with other people and instead of interacting with them we are focused on our phones.
There are some steps you can take to ensure that you don’t become overly dependent on your cell phone.
- Set a maximum amount of time you or your children can be on our device each day.
- Do not spend any time on your phone for at least 1 hour before bedtime.
- Designate some quality time each evening to spend with your loved one away from your devices.
- Engage yourself in a good book before bed instead of entertaining yourself with your device.
- Turn off push notifications that might entice you to check your phone every time you get one.
- Once a week, power down your device entirely for a whole day or at least a few hours (this will force you to find something to do away from your digital world).
- When you go to lunch or dinner with someone, don’t take your cell phone into the restaurant.
- Go for a walk and leave your device at home.
Obviously, we can’t always follow these steps perfectly, but making strides away from cell phone addiction will pay huge dividends in today’s world. By taking digital sanity breaks, you will direct your attention to real social interactions. This will reduce your overall stress and increase your sense of well-being.