Internet addiction or smartphone addiction might seem like a frivolous thing, if not for its frightening scale of real influence on the life of gadget owners. The obsessive desire to use the Internet again and again results in excessive, irrational use of devices, phones, laptops.
Just think about these numbers: a device user spends from 1 to 4 hours a day hanging out on the phone, which, on average, gives an indicator of more than 2 hours a day. And, this is a rather modest preliminary estimate, because the younger generation easily reaches 4-6 hours of using their device daily! There is one big BUT in all this - basically, we are seeing a waste of time that does not have any effect on improving the real quality of life (the only exception is when long-term use of the phone/Internet is part of the business and the time spent is monetized).
Quite often, the source of increased waste of time on a smartphone is the problem of procrastination, that is, the desire to put off really necessary, useful and necessary things for later, replacing them with the deceptive need to read news on the Internet, correspondence, post photos, etc. In relation to the younger generation, the desire to strengthen one’s own self-esteem in social networks is often added, the desire to express and show oneself, to be in demand, and the Internet and social networks are considered as the easiest, albeit deceptive, way to realize these desires. Such fascination with gadgets and virtual space often worsens the quality of real life, due to the banal lack of time for it, leading to the destruction of life plans and dreams.
Self-development and learning, work and hobbies, physical activity and the desire for new things are factors influencing high self-esteem, mental flexibility and success, and are impossible without devoting time to this. It’s simple - either a person devotes enough time to this, or he goes into virtual space, absorbing this irreplaceable, passing time. It is probably difficult to imagine a plot where a successful and rich person has the opportunity and desire to spend several hours “hanging out” on a smartphone every day, because such people have other life priorities. Reading and viewing unnecessary information about what someone's children look like, how many legs a centipede has, the top 100 facts about country X, looking at the ranking of the rich and famous, commenting on posts or posting another photo demonstrating a happy (?) life, and so on , in the overwhelming majority of cases, we will see a stream of information that is useless to us and wasted time, which in no way affects our needs or real life.
smartphone in hand.jpgHow to start correcting the situation? What are some simple ways to overcome smartphone and internet addiction?
1. Awareness of the problem
If you, while walking down the street or in nature, continue to look at your smartphone and reach for the gadget as soon as you wake up, and fall asleep with the device in your hand, if your physical activity tends to zero, but at the same time, you actively use Photoshop for your beautiful appearance like in an Instagram post, if your day goes according to the sleep-food-school/institute/work-food-sleep scenario, mixed with being stuck on the Internet and without learning something new, bringing positive changes to your real life, then there is a problem here.
Continuous web surfing, reading news and posts about someone else’s life that has nothing to do with you, littering your brain with unnecessary information, inability to relax (when can you relax if there is another text/video to watch), and, let’s add a drop in visual acuity from - due to stress on the eyes and the development of cervical osteochondrosis, due to tension with constant tilting of the head - this is a sad reality that needs to be seen.
Next, you need to understand the benefits of reducing your dependence on a smartphone and the Internet. In practice, this looks like adding some new activities or hobbies to your life, 100% changing it for the better, without using a smartphone.
Let's say, replace 30 minutes of “stuck” on the phone with 30 minutes of warm-up, exercise means health and a toned body. Or, exchange 20 minutes of Internet communication for 3 new learned English words daily, by the way, this is about 100 words per month without any serious study load, and, meanwhile, English can easily influence your future for finding a job, traveling, communication. If you feel anxious and stressed, replace 30 minutes of communication with your smartphone with meditation, just close your eyes and relax, try not to think about anything, and your body will thank you for these minutes of calm and complete rest, which will have a great effect on your health. well-being.
It is very important to start making changes and not to deviate from your goal for the first month, because from a psychological point of view, during approximately this period a person develops a habit. In order not to “turn on” procrastination, start small, so
If we take our example, you don’t need to set a goal to learn 10 foreign words a day, you can start with just 1 word, but it’s important to start. When our action becomes a habit, we can increase the pace or time of task completion, or add a new one.
3. Uninstall programs
It sounds corny, but it works. Clean your gadget, remove everything that you do not use or rarely use, and, if you have the fortitude, then those applications on which you spend a lot of time, but understand their uselessness for you. You can download a really necessary application or find the necessary information at the moment when the need arises, but in the meantime, make your gadget as “clean” as possible
4. Notifications and settings
Ask yourself how important it is for you to receive a notification from this or that program, from this or that person online, is it really vital? In the vast majority of cases, such a need does not exist. There are two points here.
The first is the complete shutdown of certain news feeds and sound signals from communities and specific people.
Secondly, it is enough to leave a sound signal for the call, but turn off other sound notifications (SMS, instant messengers, etc.).
Don't forget about the settings. For example, block automatic video playback.
This way you start managing your time effectively. It is you who decide when it is convenient for you to look at new information, it is you who control the gadget and your time, but not vice versa.
As with any addiction, changing your lifestyle regarding smartphone and Internet use requires willpower. The simplest and most difficult at the same time is the path of immediately giving up excessive use of a smartphone and reducing its use time to the necessary minimum right here and now, without any half-measures.
Or, another, less radical step-by-step path, starting with the introduction of bounding boxes for your gadget. Use simple techniques that will give their effect gradually. So, you can choose the methods that are most comfortable for you: turn off the Internet connection at night, prohibit yourself from turning on the Internet earlier than two hours after waking up in the morning, do not go near your smartphone or laptop while you are busy with other worries, until you finish it and etc.
Don’t forget to add tasks to your real life (develop, play sports, read, walk, work, hobbies, improve yourself - something that brings real results, etc.) without touching the gadget, make it a rule to leave your phone in another room/bag while eating – enjoy your food without being distracted by information flows.
Start small and you will achieve results.