Wirelessly Tied Down
Cell phones, laptops, PDAs, tablets. These are just some of the many electronic devices we plug into daily, and the list is only growing. With emails to check, friend requests to accept, and tweets to post, people just can’t seem to break their digital addiction.
According to the research firm eMarketer, the average American spends 693 minutes—over 11 hours— on major media per day. But is all this online time really good for us? It’s bad enough many of us spend our work day glued to some sort of screen, but in our down time too? Something has to give.
In the age of wireless-everything, we seem to be more tied down by our devices than ever before. With the influx of Wi-Fi internet access and always-on networks, there’s a nonstop flow of information coming our way at all times. In some instances, this instant, all-access pass to information can be a good thing; but when it serves as a constant reminder of pending deadlines, deals, and debacles, it can become quite taxing. People are never given the opportunity to mentally recharge and relax, which inevitably wears on them physically and leads to medical risks and overall decreased health and wellness.
Physically, overuse of these gadgets can lead to eye strain, insomnia and even carpal tunnel, all of which can drive medical bills through the roof. So, decreasing your use of them isn’t just good for your sanity, it’s good for your wallet.
There also exists the concern of the strain it places on your actual, human interactions. Friends and family members swap empty dialogue over their devices and normal conversation becomes an afterthought. Adults need to stop and think about the sort of example they are setting for younger generations. Children see their parents glued to their various screens and therefore assume this is the new, accepted norm. Livestrong cites that increased video game use among teens can lead to depression and possibly even complete social withdrawal. Recognizing the need to reverse this growing trend, a new national coalition called Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood aims to decrease the time children spend connected.
Now, I see the irony and hypocritical tone of this article, since you most likely found it while searching the web. However, the message here is not to completely cease using any of these luxuries, but rather to do so in moderation. There is no need to be connected 24/7. The world will not stop turning if you ignore that text message, email or notification an extra five minutes.
Cut yourself some slack and relax. Quit letting yourself suffocate under the endless mountain of data that is aimed at you. Go outside, get some fresh air and sunshine, and just take in the moment. Your mind, body, and loved ones will appreciate it.
About the Author
Amelia Wood pursues freelance writing projects in the medical billing and coding schools niche. She especially loves hearing back from her readers. Questions or comments can be sent to Wood at: firstname.lastname@example.org.