Understanding digital tools don’t cause our digital addiction is one thing. The attention economy is a whole other beast. There is not enough willpower in the world to avoid the constant instant gratification and distractions a smartphone provides. We need a more aggressive solution to take back our precious time and attention.
It is an attempt to escape the unappealing realities of life; pain, boredom, loss, emotional turmoil, suffering.
The widely accepted definition describes addiction as excessive use of drugs or alcohol to escape, relax, or as a reward to enjoy life, with the belief that you can’t cope without them. Addiction has two basic qualities: you do more of the thing than you would like to, and you continue to do it despite its negative consequences.
In addition, at least three of the following criteria must be met to be diagnosed for addiction: tolerance, withdrawal,limited control, negative consequences, neglecting or postponing activities, significant time or energy spent, and the desire to cut down.
Self-medicating is the use of alcohol or drugs, or any external influence, to manage physical or psychological afflictions. Almost anything used in excess to deal with or escape negative emotions can be considered self-medicating.
A guest post by a dear friend of mine: CK. Without further ado…
Cause and effect is an important principle.
If we are assessing our smartphone use (effect) then what causes its use? Is the cause being uncomfortable with the current situation?
I observe a lot of people using their phones when there’s a small amount of silence in a room with two people. For example, in a doctor’s office, an elevator, or waiting for someone in a restaurant. It’s almost reflexive. If so, how do we get more comfortable with that uncomfortable silence?
Texting culture has burdened us with the expectation to be reachable and responsive 24/7. What is such expectation costing us?
Although I didn’t feel entirely alone in suffering from texting induced anxiety, I didn’t think the problem was relevant enough to grant clinical terms, such as textiety and textaphrenia.
Text messaging is an essential part of communication, providing a quick and convenient method to stay connected with our family, friends, and acquaintances. But, despite being a useful mode of communication, the expectation to be reachable and responsive 24/7, literally, can be very stressful and overwhelming for many.
Textiety refers to the anxious feeling one gets from not receiving or sending text messages.
Mental health professionals are reporting anxiety around texting show up in their practice, and it is now part of a new area of research and treatment related to mobile devices and online communication.
As a digital minimalist, is it possible to ‘do social media’ without the constant connectivity that apps like Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and others enable? In this post, Matt is going to put forward the case that you can.