We have heard time and time again of the ways that immersive technology and smartphone addiction are harmful to mankind. While this might be true, it is also true that too much of anything isn't good.
So instead of telling you that you need to throw your devices away indefinitely and consider a more Amish route, I'm just going to give you some good reasons to make an effort to take habitual breaks from your phone.
Here are 8 benefits you will experience when you disconnect from your phone:
1. Less back and neck pain
If your neck is constantly craned down at your phone, you may suffer from the modern "tech neck" pandemic. Given how much time we all spend on our phones, it is not surprising that people are having this problem. Luckily there is an easy fix: make an active effort to disconnect more often, you may be paid off with less soreness.
2. Increased focus
The arrival of the digital age has meant that news is condensed to 140 characters and conversations can be compressed to emojis. Studies show that in this day and age, the human adult attention span has dropped from 8 seconds to just 3. It is possible to reverse these effects and lengthen our attention span by severing phone addiction and keeping our phone out of reach when we want to concentrate on a given task.
3. Decreased stress
The less you are bombarded with events going on elsewhere, the more relaxed you will be. Since we are always on our phones and therefore always bombarded with events elsewhere, it is not surprising that our society is so stressed out. Our phones keep us constantly accountable to all of our contacts and make it so that we are always “on" -unless we are absolutely off. So make a habit of turning your phone off once in awhile to enjoy your freedom and solidarity.
4. Better social skills
The less you focus on cyberspace and your digital conversations, the more you will focus on the present time and real space around you. You will pay more attention to the people in front of you. You will experience less anxiety and FOMO if you’re not constantly checking your phone, and therefore be more pleasant and calm to interact with.
I would suggest leaving your phone at home or in a different room. You will be able to give a better you to the social situation you’re in, because it won’t have to compete with or be accompanied by your throng of ongoing text message convos.
5. Increased confidence/happiness
Spending time comparing yourself to the polished, embellished online representations of your peers can lead to feelings of jealousy, inferiority, and lack of self worth. Researchers say that one in three people feel worse about themselves and less satisfied with their own lives after visiting Facebook. So take a breather from Facebook and Instagram.
Remember that the girl you envy on Instagram only posted the very best picture from possibly hundreds of attempts, and that very best picture was probably edited and filtered too. Remember that people only post a Facebook status when they get accepted to med school, not when they get rejected. Remember that social media is not an accurate and holistic representation of people, it is a siphoned-off portion of the parts that they like about themselves, and even those best parts are often embellished, exaggerated or entirely fabricated.
However, sometimes trying to remember these things that we have been told and we know is not enough to keep our irrational minds from telling us we are inferior, so it's better just to unplug and take a break.
6. Better sleep
The artificial blue light emitted from our phones actually ruins the quality of our sleep by preventing us from feeling sleepy. The blue light actually disrupts the body’s production of sleep-inducing hormones. Specialists say its better to keep the phone out of the bedroom, and suggest rocking ourselves to sleep with a book or a thoughtful reflection of the day rather than a final scroll through Instagram.
7. Saves you money
When you are online, you are constantly exposed to advertisements in one way or another. Statistics show that the more we are exposed to a product, the likelier we are to buy what is being advertised. So if you are constantly scrolling through Tash Oakley’s IG page, chances are that you’re not just going to feel jealous and less awesome about yourself, but you’re going to be that much more likely to buy a Monday swimwear suit.
Beyond that, in one way or another phone usage costs us money, whether it be because we're buying music, apps, or just paying for the colossal amount of data required to watch everyone’s snapchat stories.
8. Increased productivity
Here's a fact: on average, a person checks their phone every 11 minutes. Another fact: it takes 25 minutes to become truly focused on a task. Therefore, if we are constantly interrupting that concentration process every 11 minutes, we never allow ourselves to become truly immersed in the task at hand. It’s better to leave phones out of reach when trying to be productive, because when we are doing too much at once, we are actually doing very little. When we unplug, we are no longer disturbed or distracted and as a result, productivity soars.