Keep On Scrolling: What Really Keeps You Glued To Your Phone?

Smartphone addiction is a real thing, recent research suggests. But have we really got the full picture?

David Bird Cognitive Hypnotherapy Leighton Buzzard

Recently, I watched the video of Simon Sinek talking about 'Millennials in the Workplace'. And if you haven't seen it, I'd highly recommend you watch it.

He talks about the how and why Millenials got the deal they did. I found it insightful. A lot rings true. But not all. Specifically the bits about technology and addiction. About how early technology use can cause a 'hard-wired' addiction, preventing learning proper stress-coping strategies.

Smartphone weren't around when I was growing up. And I was still socially awkward. Growing up, I spent most evenings in front of a computer. Sometimes gaming. But mostly chatting online. And largely with people I knew.

Was I addicted? Yes. In a way. But it was the connection I craved. Not distraction from it.

My lack of social skills were there before. Were they exacerbated or enabled because of technology? Most likely. But not caused by it. I struggled emotionally well before I ever installed MSN Messenger.

I talked to people through a screen because I worried less about my words when I could consider and construct them first. I felt less self-conscious without my fear of judgement spiking from their lingering gaze. And I felt that way before I had technology to (supposedly) make me feel that way.

I had friends I talked to at school, and still felt like an outsider. I went weekly to a local music venue, and still found it impossible to strike up conversations with strangers.

So while I'd agree, a smartphone might help enable not-as-healthy coping strategies for dealing with stress or lack of social skills, can we really say they're the cause?

I'm not saying things are ok the way they are. It makes sense to be mindful of technology use. To educate people. To make it easier to talk face-to-face than to stare at a screen. But let's not confuse cause for effect.

Because you can't fix blown tyre by putting more petrol in the tank. The same way you can't solve any problem if you're not looking in the right place to begin with.

(Looking to make a change? Cognitive Hypnotherapy in Leighton Buzzard can help you. Get in touch to learn how).