Guilty As Charged : Addicted To Scrolling
You do it. I do it. You might even be doing it now. “Scrolling.” It’s a phenomenon that many of us have grown up with. When I was a kid, the Internet wasn’t yet commercially viable and when people called on the phone, you would have no choice but to (gasp!) answer without knowing who it was! The pressure! The (potentially) awkward conversation! Yes. The struggle was, as they say, “real.”
But, what it brought to your life was a sense of spontaneity and it forced you to have to be a human occasionally, even when you would rather not. When attempting to learn the mysteries of the world, school, books and newspapers were your answer.
Nowadays, the Internet is the key to almost anything. Have a desire to find out the origins of, well, anything? “Google it” is an essential answer to your questions.
But what happens with that instantivity? Yes, we just made that word up. It’s the desire to require information instantly. Are you the type of person who has stacks of unread books in their home? Guilty. Nowadays, I get my instant fix and then end up on an endless scroll of such illuminating subjects as “12 Former Child Stars Who Are Now Bald” or “Fast & Furious: Celebrity Whips.” Hey! I try not to…but we are all human.
What I discovered though is that scrolling endlessly on these types of topics made me feel less than human. It ends up feeling empty, disconnected from others and tired. It’s time for a take back. And now is the perfect time.
It’s just about January and maybe you are making New Year’s Resolutions. Eating clean and exercising are great ones, but what about a different kind of exercise? One where you simply unplug for part of the day. By unplugging we allow ourselves time to reconnect with others, nature and increase our mindfulness.
Perhaps try with one evening a week. Maybe two? Or maybe try to set aside the beginning of your day to work on tasks at hand, stopping yourself from answering emails and browsing on social media. The emails may seem to require an immediate response at first, but once you realize that yes, it can wait (and it might elicit a better response when you do). In addition, you may find that you are approaching your day in a much more relaxed fashion and at the same time getting even more done than before.
It’s hard. Yes. But as with any habit we wish to break, slowly and surely does the trick. Try to set a goal for yourself. One hour less per week during the first week and maybe two less the next week. Whatever your method is, just try to keep with it and mark your progress on a calendar or planner. Seeing your success can help perpetuate it. If technology has been putting you in a sour mood and taking up useful time, why not give it a try.