‘Screen addiction’. It’s a struggle for so many millennials, myself included. We are glued to our phones and laptops, constantly checking our texts and twitters. In our generation, we have become so technology-dependant, which sometimes causes us to miss out on reality. The average teenager spends around 7 hours a day using technology- that’s almost 1/3 of our entire day. We seem to spend so much time focused on comparing ourselves to others, obsessing over how many likes on instagram our photos get, how many ‘friends’ on Facebook we have, and how long it’s been since that boy has read our text without replying. Our lives become consumed in this technology trap that we have grown so comfortable with.
I didn’t really realize I had a ‘screen addiction’ problem until this past summer. When I headed off to Tanzania with my family, I was more concerned about ‘not having wifi’ than not having running water or air conditioning. I noticed my happiness was so dependent on my technology, which is so incredibly sad to admit. Sometimes I feel like I miss out on life because I am too busy behind the glowing screen of my iPhone. The internet is a wonderful thing, don’t get me wrong, but it seems to be one of those things best used in moderation. I’ve been thinking a lot over the past week- about everything. About life, my goals, my friends, my perception of the world, and my worries. I started to realize the source of a lot of my stresses and concerns. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in our ‘technology’ world that we forget to really enjoy and appreciate the world around us. I have decided I want to make it my goal to limit my time spent on the internet a little less. I want to read more, walk more, shop more, do yoga more, cook more, draw more, meet new people more- I want to do it all. But how can I appreciate these things to the fullest when I am too busy checking my phone every ten minutes? Our obsession with technology really can cause so many more unnecessary stresses to our lives. When I sat down and really thought about my worries and stresses in lives, the majority of them were centered around technology. I am making it my goal for the next few weeks to try to limit my technology use a little, and live life a lot more. I’ve actually decided to delete one of my instagrams, which I know may confuse some of you. I think having two is really just unnecessary for me right now with how busy life has been. Instagram consumes too much of my time as I find it hard to resist scrolling and scrolling for hours. In addition, I feel like technology distracts me so much from my studies. When I go to the library, I always bring my laptop and iPhone. However, I find myself checking every social media platform every ten to twenty minutes for a ‘study break’. I can’t imagine how much more I would learn and soak in if I could just make it an hour or two without needing to check my phone. Also, I need to stop sleeping with my electronics in my bed with me. I am an insomniac, but I really think my ‘screen addiction’ is to blame. When I was in Africa without technology, I slept so much better and never had a hard time falling asleep. But now that I am back in the land of internet, I realize I don’t go to bed until 3:00 or 4:00 am on average. As much as I would love to blame it on the time change or loud city night life, the truth of the matter is, it’s my technology.
So in summary, here are my goals for the next few weeks:
- Spend less time on the internet, and more time enjoying life
- Limit the time I spend each day checking my phone/social media
- Turn off my phone when I go to the library- don’t just turn it on silent
- Don’t sleep with my phone or laptop in my bed, and limit my technology before bed
- Try new things and explore new places
I recently saw this video, and it really made me self-reflect on my time and my life. If we’re being completely honest, it actually made me tear up to realize how little free time we actually have in this life. How much time have I wasted completely wrapped up in my online world? What else could I have been doing with that time? “The Time You Have” video really, really inspired me, and I hope you all enjoy it too!
I’m sorry if this post was a little negative/personal, but it was something that I wanted to share. It’s been on my heart these past few days. Hope you all are having an awesome, awesome Monday!