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Have phones replaced friends? How to win the battle against screen addition

Smartphone seperation is real and it’s a crippling addiction for some. Here’s some ways to curb it.

Smartphone addiction

If being unable to answer your phone at any time drives you crazy, you might find it comforting to know you’re not the only one. Phone separation or nomophobia, is intense, irrational fear of being out of mobile phone contact. To be honest, losing an expensive piece of digital equipment that contains pictures, contact information, and music can be stressful, that’s for sure, but placing your digital device just out of arm’s reach shouldn’t, right?

Wrong. According to CNET, nearly 60 percent of respondents don’t go an hour without checking their phones and 54 percent check their phones while lying in bed. Researchers have also recently discovered that 9 percent of users even check their phones in church during worship hours.

For some of us, the answer might seem obvious. Just simply leave your phone somewhere you can’t check it, that way you no longer feel chained to your device. Now, although this may seem like a good idea, this theory can create more problems than resolutions. For example, scientists at the University of Missouri discovered that being separated from your phone can lead to “physiological” and “poor cognitive performance.” Which can result in depression, causing you to feel nauseous, and experience dizziness.

Who would have thought being separated from your phone could lead to all this?

To make matters worse, these handheld devices also encourages us to make poor decisions when faced with an obstacle. With more than 6 billion phones roaming around the Earth, it’s nearly impossible to walk down a street without seeing one.

Before giving up and accepting that you can’t live without your phone, here are some things you may want to consider in order to help decrease the amount of time spent on your device.

Ways To Overcome Phone Separation

Determine your level of nomophobia. Put yourself to the test and go outside for a bit, or take a drive around the block to see how you react without your device. If you find yourself panicking, and thinking about your device, chances are, you’re experiencing nomophobia. On the contrary, if you find it soothing not having your phone on you, this could mean that you’re not attached to your digital device. However you view it, just know that you are taking the first step towards fixing this problem.

Breathe, and Relax. You don’t have to escape to Mount Everest in order to meditate and focus on yourself. Instead, take a ten minute break, close your eyes, and focus on breathing in and out. Relax while your phone is somewhere you can’t hear it buzzing. After all, you’ll still have another 23 hours and 50 minutes left in the day to talk on your phone, and play Pokémon Go.

Talk About A Project. In all honestly, this may sound a bit cheesy, but talking to a friend about a complex task, such as, starting up a business, or rebuilding a vehicle allows your thoughts to come to life. In other words, it forces you to think outside the box and gets you so engaged in the conversation, that you forget your phone is right next to you. It’s a good way to forget your electronic device. Just be sure to stay away from topics that deal with digital devices, otherwise this may prompt you to check your phone.

Topic ideas:

  • Homework
  • Volunteer opportunities
  • Improving your health
  • Rebuilding a car

Make A Contract. Generally speaking, contracts are simply pieces of paper that holds us accountable for our actions. To clarify, it keeps us in line, and reminds us about the deals we’ve made with other people. A contract, however, doesn’t always have to be between two individuals. So if you’re up for the challenge, write a contract to yourself stating when it’s acceptable for you to use your phone, and when it’s not. Pact, for example, is an online application that acts like a surety bond, holding you, the user responsible for your end of the bargain.  

Once the contract is completed, sign and date it, then place it somewhere you’ll see every day such as a closet door, refrigerator, or even your front door.

Go For A Swim. Seeing a beautiful body of deep blue water has the ability to make anyone forget about their digital device. Swimming in it, though, is even better. It’s something about water running over your scalp, and feeling it between your fingers creates a calm feeling, and puts us in a state of relaxation. What it makes this environment even better is that, phones typically aren’t used to capture this breathtaking moment. Unless, of course, you want to purposely ruin the phone, or have a waterproof case. Whatever the case maybe, enjoying a beautiful scene filled with water is never a bad idea.

Remember, eyes on the road, not on the screen.

Thank you for reading my article. I would like to know, do you have a hard time staying off your phone? Or do you know someone who does? I will be checking for comments, so feel free to express your thoughts on today’s subject.

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H.D. enjoys being active and finds any excuse to outside and explore the outdoors. If you can’t catch him online, you might be able to catch him working out at the gym, or cheering on the Denver Broncos. Follow him on Twitter at @Davis241.

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