Health & Wellness / Smarten Up: You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone

Smarten Up: You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone

Health & Wellness Aug 29, 2018

Have you been out to dinner and found yourself swallowing feelings of frustration as your friend pays more attention to their smartphone then you? Are you the smartphone addict described? Check out our tips because you need to be smart about using your smartphone! 

Approximately 2.53 billion people around the world have a smartphone. With 337 million of those users in India, the country is projected to have the highest growth rate of users in 2018 (15%). Generating over 475 billion US dollars around the world in sales revenue in 2017, it’s safe to say smart phones are here to stay for a while and leads us to question, is that a bad thing? Did you get a chance to think and learn about the impact of smartphones on your brain and spirit before ownership became the new cultural norm? The honest answer for many is no; smartphones seemed to appear on the market as a must-have device overnight and have taken on a marketing life of their own (people literally camp-out overnight to get the latest Iphone).

 

You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone
You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone: Smartphone usage is on the rise.               Image Credit:https://yourstory.com

 

Overall, we support the smartphone movement because we recognize the benefits; they provide an ease of access to information and open several channels of communication. When used in a healthy manner, smartphones can be positive but how do you ensure your usage is healthy and not harmful?

A good first step is to increase your awareness on their impact. Check out this info to better understand the ways your smartphone can affect you along with solution focused suggestions:

Can decrease memory skills: The ease of access to information makes you less likely to retain information. Ask yourself, have you ever googled the definition of a word multiple times? Before dictionaries were at our fingertips, we had to place more effort (e.g. finding a physical dictionary, looking up the word, etc.) therefore had more motivation to learn and remember our findings.

Tip: Slow down and process what you’ve looked up. If it’s a word, try to use it in a few different sentences (write them out if you can).

Can cause fatigue and increase stress: Light from smartphone screens (and other technology screens) can impact our melatonin production and circadian rhythms; heavy usage can lead to a higher likelihood of sleep disorders.

Tip: Put your phone away a minimum of 15 minutes before you head to bed. To help resist the urge to check it, place it on silent or airplane mode and place it further away from your bed; knowing you have to get up to check it, will make you less likely to do so (worried about a family member? Not a problem, you can still assign certain emergency contacts to be notified if they call in the night).

You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone
You Need To Be Smart About Using Your Smartphone: Do you own your phone or does your phone own you?    Take back your power! Image credit: https://medium.com

 

Can be addictive: Many of us underestimate the amount of time we spend on our phone. One study showed that we spend on average of 1/3 of our waking day on our phone, another that the average we check it is 85 times in a day. Yet another study showed that 50% of teenagers are addicted to their smartphones.

Tip:  Ask yourself, are you constantly on your phone? Remember just because you get a phone alert it doesn’t mean you have to react right away. If you’re engrossed in a task or spending time with someone, don’t allow your phone to pull you away from the joy of the present moment. Check out this free quiz to help determine if you’re addicted.

 

Main Image Photo Credit: https://thesocietypages.org

Rachna Sethi

Rachna Sethi

Author

Rachna (@mindfullyyours)is a graduate of the Applied Mindfulness Meditation program from the University of Toronto, a certified Educator with two bachelor degrees and a diploma in Art Therapy. She's dedicated to living with a compassionate approach. Committed to helping people integrate Mindfulness...

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