Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Smartphone Addiction

Recently I’ve been looking at how we use smartphones in our daily lives. In discussing this point with students, I was quick to state that I didn’t overuse my smartphone. However, when it comes to using the internet (in search of information), I realized that, just as so many people are addicted to their smartphones, so too am I addicted to the information that I get (or don’t get) from the internet. Thus, I’ve decided to explore this point a little more in an effort to better balance my day to day living so that I’m no longer overweight with internet searches. Whereas I thought that I was teaching students about the dangers of smartphone addiction and spending too much time on “their” smartphones, I now see that such dangers also apply to other devices that connect to the internet, such as “my” computer. Actually, I guess it’s not even about the device itself, but the virtual reality of the internet. Is the internet sucking us in? The short answer to the question, “is the internet sucking us in” is, most definitely yes. Furthermore, if we’re not careful or if we do not change the direction we’re heading in relation to the virtual reality, many of us are likely to lose touch completely with this physical reality - as is depicted in the movie, The Matrix. In looking at the amount of time that I’ve been spending on the internet, I see that I have in mind been searching for the answers “out there,” rather than looking in-words into me to see, realize and understand that, answers are not to be found, but designed, lived and understood as part of the process of self-creation, becoming the change in ourselves to the questions that never were out there to begin with. Anyway, in order to finnish this post and post it while I’m still in the classroom, I commit to do the following in relation to the internet. Firstly, I’m turning off all “internet” notifications on my phone. This includes sounds and lights. If there is an emergency, the telephone will still ring. Furthermore, I’m going to turn off anything to do with AI asking or telling me to do something, e.g., Google constantly asking me to “Rediscover this day.” Really improper. Finally, I’m going to more closely monitor how much time I spend on the internet and I’m going to actively begin reducing the time I spend on the internet. Specifically, I choose the red pill - the one where I wake and change myself.

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