Addictions come in all shapes and sizes, often times in the traditional form of drugs, alcohol and gambling. However we’re now seeing new addictions in the form of social media and selfies, also spiking the endorphins in our brain. I have a severe addiction to my phone, like many people do. When I wake up I like to check my Instagram feed to see what has happened during the 8 hours I had been asleep. I call this post the love/hate relationship because it truly is something I love to do and at other times need to learn to switch off.
There are plenty of critics out there that will say our generation doesn’t understand the true meaning of face to face relationships anymore. I will even admit, when I walk to the train in the morning before work I am looking at my phone, and when I look up, everyone else is too. I believe the power of social media and the internet has created a virtual life for each and every one of us that makes us feel like we are right inside our phones. When I look at the photos from a dinner I had the other night it makes me feel like I am experiencing it all again. We have a need to stay connected and I don’t believe it is necessarily a bad thing, I think we just need to learn to switch off at times as well.
The reason I know social media isn’t a terrible thing is because most of my career success has been launched from it. Whether it be writing my blog, posting photos for people to see or learning new things to further my potential, social media has enabled me to do so. For that I am ever so grateful and thankful. The only time it gets in the way is when I stare at my phone for too long looking at absolutely nothing. There comes a point of addiction where I will keeping trying to scroll through Instagram hoping a new photo will be there to feed my brain. I am sitting there waiting for a new delicious coffee photo, a new beach picture, just to keep my brain buzzing. This is what we do to ourselves when it becomes too much. We wait for new pictures, new gossip and new stories in order to keep ourselves entertained. We are in a day and age where we constantly need to be stimulated.
My tips to switching off from time to time:
1) Separate yourself from your phone for at least 1 hour a day – Whether you are going to the gym, going to grocery shop or whatever it might be…leave your phone at home and talk to the person you are with. If you are not with anyone, try to look around, there’s a lot to see right in front of you.
2) Go outside! – Go for a walk, a run, or play a sport.. It is hard to hold your phone while you are doing something active!
3) Let go of needing to know every detail – If you can’t make it to the bottom of the Instagram scroll… ITS OKAY! You are still alive, you didn’t miss anything, life is still happening.
Carly Jensen xo
Photo credit: guardianlv.com, Banksy