I am addicted to my iPhone. I try to limit myself by refraining from downloading any social media but I make an exception for Instagram. Just one social media app and I can’t stop thinking about it. I’m constantly thinking about which of my adventures are post worthy, which pictures would attract the most likes, and of course the all-important caption; it has to fit perfectly with the photos. Most of my friends have up to ten social media apps, one can imagine how much it takes over their life.
Even if I didn’t have a social media account, I believe I would still experience addiction; less than I currently experience but still consequential. There are literal chemical reward pathways that smartphones trigger leading users to seek rewards and satisfaction from staring blankly at a 2D screen. Don’t get me wrong, I still love my phone dearly and have no plans for throwing it out the window, but moderated use is one of my New Year’s resolutions. Use it when necessary, like texting and emailing, but I am going to try to make social media and the “fun stuff” a rare reward so I don’t end up controlled by this silly, but powerful device.
This article from Science Daily, talks about a study that investigated the ways that smartphone addicts experience damage to the “regulation of processing in the cognitive and emotional neural network.” In other words, smartphones are messing with our emotional regulation and some basic brain functions. It is no wonder that our society is experiencing extreme rates of depression and attention issues.
BEWARE, iPhones seem so innocent, how could looking at Instagram for a little while (or 5 hours) have actual physical consequences?? The answer: Everything in moderation.
Here’s the science behind it; don’t let this be you. Please.