Mental Health and Cell Phones

Welcome to Blogtober: Post Thirteen!

Is it possible that the very phone most of us all have within hands reach is what’s creating so any problems for us in our daily lives?

There is no doubt that technology has increased the quality of many of our lives in more than one aspect. Information is literally in the palm of our hands. Especially now, with the pandemic and being isolated from friends and family for so long, technology may be what has been saving us. Even still, could it be that technology is also driving us apart from each other? Creating a mental barrier that is harming our relationships with ourselves and others?

I’m just as guilty as anyone else. I check my phone consistently throughout the day. I need to be plugged into what’s going on in the world, the Presidents latest tweets, COVID updates and many other things. A notification goes off and my eyes immediately check my phone. It’s addictive and dangerous.

At the height of our pandemic, my phone became the most toxic and the most helpful extension of myself. I couldn’t be around friends or family and the only form of interactions I had was through my phone. And at the same time the consistent Googling and updates, all of the bad news, all of the terrifying aspects of the pandemic were being drilled into my brain every time I unlocked my phone.

Even now, it’s wonderful to have everything I need in the palms of my hands. I’ve also noticed the disconnect between friends and family. I’ve gone out to eat with friends who spent our meal checking their phone, not being present and asking me to repeat my words as they were distracted and didn’t hear them the first time. I’ve watched television with friends where they’re asking me what happens as they missed it while scrolling through Twitter. I’ve tried to sit down to a meal or for a drink and watched my company’s eyes continuously checking their phone — even if they didn’t have their hand on their phone, their eyes weren’t present. They were checking.

It’s impossible for people to put their phones in their pockets or in their purse or leave them in their cars for an hour meal. For a walk around the park. They have to be plugged in, posting on social media, updating their loved ones on how amazing their day is — I only wonder how amazing that day would be had it not been lived through a phone camera.

How are we truly enjoying experiences, people, things….. life…. When we’re consumed with updating Instagram so everyone known where we are. Are we living in the moment, we are enjoying life, are we gaining experiences by not being present? Could it be possible that when we’re unable to be in the present, we’re ruining our experiences? Our relationships?

I know, when I am trying to connect with someone in the present, that person being on their phone makes me to not desire creating time to spend with that person. I won’t say that I’m not guilty. I have been doing my best to get better and one of the reasons why was that I found myself not enjoying life.

I couldn’t put the phone down and be with the people that I loved. I couldn’t be present and it began to consume me. I had to start holding myself accountable for living the life that I’ve been given. Lately, I’ve also been holding those around me accountable for the same thing. This life is too short and when someday the people that I love aren’t here anymore, I want to remember them, not their cell phone.

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