What Does Our Addiction to Smartphones Say About Us?

What Does Our Addiction to Smartphones Say About Us?

Social Studies | Posted by YouInc.com - January 15, 2014 at 12:00 am
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Is it information you need, a bit of help, or a ride straight to rehab? Jesse Ship keeps abreast of the trending issues that matter most to entrepreneurs. 

411 – Do You Need Information?

Smartphones emerged from the failures and impracticalities of the PDA market, like the epically failed Newton, ironically developed by Apple during their dark ages. Further evolutions like the Palm Treo didn’t really pick up in Canada until the beloved Crackberry bestowed execs with glowing screens, tactile keyboards, and the ability to work on Microsoft Office docs all day and night. 

As a business owner, the choice of smartphones is becoming a matter of personal preference, with screen size, resolution, camera quality and the ability to customize the display being deciding factors.

611 – Do You Need Help?

According to a study by the email marketing service, Constant Contact, 66% of small business owners currently use mobile devices, including smartphones and tablets, to run their businesses. Mobile apps are playing a large role in how small businesses manage their operations, with 82% using built-in or downloadable calendar and time management apps, and with 74% using apps like Intercom or Zendesk. And if you’re in a pinch, they even make phone calls!

For power users, technosis will sometimes set in. That’s a noticeable dependency on a steady flow of information and technology.

911 – Or Do You Need A Ride To Rehab?

In a study of 1,600 managers and professionals, Leslie Perlow, PhD, a Konosuke Matsushita Professor of Leadership at the Harvard Business School, found that 44% of participants said they would experience a great deal of anxiety if their phones were lost and not replaced within a week. Within a week? Geez. Peak anxiety hits at stage two of the grieving process, once you get over the mountain of denial, which could take between an hour or a day, depending on how badly you need your baby back in your life.

For power users, technosis will sometimes set in. That’s a noticeable dependency on a steady flow of information and technology.  Symptoms include imagined buzzing in the pants, sometimes in the wrong pocket, or even when your phone is not even on your person, like Phantom Limb Syndrome. Authors like David Greenfield, PhD, say that computer technologies can be addictive because they're psychoactive. That is, they alter mood and often trigger enjoyable feelings.

Like any addiction, there are the terrible lows. Like the crushing blow of waking up fully dressed in bed with the lights on after a wild night and discovering you’ve lost your precious, and you realize it’s your phone you love more than anything in life. 

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Are you addicted to your mobile phone? Do you set boundaries about how and when you use it? Share your comments below – or write a blog about it here.

Tags: addiction, apps, digital tools, google, mobile, productivity, smartphones, technosis, health

Jesse Ship
Jesse Ship is a freelance journalist with specialization in crafting branded content.  His words have appeared in print and the web, in publications as wide reaching as Huffington Post, Scion Magazine, Design Lines, Beatport and The Grid.  He’s also had some success as a roving street photographer, capturing shots of ordinary life that that are just extraordinary enough to publish.
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