In a modern world, the most popular device is a smartphone with a touch screen. And it doesn’t matter if you have Android or Apple device, or even no-name Chinese – you will definitely use it every day.
In general, the aim of such devices was good, I think, they helped people communicate fast and effectively and use different applications for planning business and entertainment activities.
I also have a smartphone and when I bought it, I planned to use it for my study: reading books, listening to audio lectures, search on the internet, write different notes and documents and most importantly plan my day-to-day tasks. I thought that smartphone should simplify my life and give me the tools I need for effective learning, but the sad truth lay behind. The smartphone became my time killer.
Once, Albert Einstein, one of the most brilliant scientists of the 20th century, said: ‘I fear the day technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.’ And right now walking on the street or sitting in a coffee shop I see that he was right. The young people instead of talking staring at the device screen typing, playing or watching something. In the subway or bus, or waiting for somebody in the park people spent their time with the smartphone playing simple but addictive games, like Hexagon or Angry Birds or writing messages and sharing photos on social networks. And even having an ability to read or enjoy the view they are sitting or walking and keep using their toys to kill the free time they have.
Even I, learning psychology in the college, use a smartphone and suffer from its absence. The nomophobia – possibility to stay without a smartphone – became my worst fear. The smartphone allows me to stay connected with my friends and family, and without this guaranteed by internet or cell connection I feel lonely and anxious, and sometimes depressed. I keep chatting and texting, using Viber, Skype, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram even when I don’t actually need them and can talk to the real person.
Moreover, we are all already have another psychological disorder, so-called “phantom cell phone vibration syndrome”, we feel it when we are keeping our phone in a pocket or a bag and constantly checking if we have received anything or missed a call. If we have not got anything we feel abandoned and if we have got – pleased and happy.
Larry Rosen, in his book iDisorder, outlines that day to day use of technology can lead you to different signs of psychological disorders, such as stress, sleeplessness, and a compulsive need to check in with all of your technology. I totally agree with him, and already trying to follow guidelines provided in this book, to reduce the impact of technology on my life.
For me, it seems that life became too digital, and we started to talk less and enjoy only online activities instead of the world and people around us. Every day we start checking messages and new posts, answering and commenting and not talking to each other. We don’t tell “Good morning” to each other, we post “Good morning” online instead.
Right now I am trying not to use a smartphone when I am at home with my family, while walking at the park, I took several books from the library and read them on a bus during my way to college, and know what? I feel much better, I started to communicate more, I prefer sitting at the café with my girlfriend in a “Quite zones” without cell phones. I even benefit from that, by getting discounts for my dinner (some restaurants offer discounts to the ones who leave their mobile at the receptionist). And my main rule now – use a smartphone only when you definitely need it, not to become a person Albert Einstein talked about.