It is no surprise to anyone that people now spend more time on their phones now than they do talking to each other. No matter where one looks, everyone is on their mobile phones. The sight to best describe this is the metro at 8 in the morning. Hundreds of people on their way to school, college, or office. They’re all different people with different experiences and struggles. However, the one thing that binds them all together is what they’re doing at that moment. Eyes glued to the screen, watching, reading, listening.
WHY IS A BREAK NEEDED?
Mobile phones might hold different uses and meanings for everyone, but the problems that they cause are the same. Other than the obvious health problems, they also pull one away from one’s life. They cause you to be completely involved in another world, and many times, that world is someone else’s life. This also leads to various mental health issues. The constant feeling to have what you don’t, to think that others are succeeding while you are not can be devastating. That is why it is extremely important to take a break from staying on our phones, and appreciate the experiences around us.
Here is how to step out of the world of technology, even if just for a little bit:
Limit social media
A major part of what people do on their mobile phones all day is scroll through social media platforms. Be it Instagram, Facebook, or Snapchat, people keep looking through other’s posts and pictures. If nothing else works, random videos on Facebook are always an option. This not only affects one’s confidence, but it also, in the long run, takes away our ability to sit idle. Sitting idle doesn’t necessarily mean wasting time. It means being able to sit with one’s thoughts and introspect, or focus on what’s happening around. This can be done by uninstalling apps or setting reminders to log off.
Airplane mode is a function that allows the user to use some features on their mobile phones without having to stay connected with others. This does not allow the user to send/receive calls, but WiFi and Bluetooth can be turned on separately. The flight mode feature allows the user to disconnect from the rest of the world and focus on what’s important, or peaceful, at that time.
Monitoring screen time
This helps the user keep track of how much time they’re spending on their phone. Furthermore, it also helps monitor how much time is being spent on each app. This helps put things in perspective. Studies have proved that the average person spends nearly 4 hours on their phone every day. That amounts to a quarter of the time they are awake. This feature can be enabled in iPhones by going to Settings >> ScreenTime (it’s now 8th down) >> Turn on Screen Time. There are also various apps available for the same.
When it doubt, don’t bring your phone out
A particular habit that a lot of people have is using their phones when they are out in public to avoid human interaction. This, again, starts to hinder our ability to interact with new people in the long run. This is where older people’s “humare zamane mai” (in the old times) saying would fit in. People would talk to each other, to strangers when out in public. That allowed people to cultivate more friendships and become more social.
It is not possible to do this in one day. Time is needed for all changes. And as stands true for all things, and especially friendships, one step goes a long way!