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Managing Technology Use

May 10th, 2020


“I like to hang out with people who make me forget to look at my phone.” -Anonymous

Overlooking a desk shared by a group of people with many computers, tablets, and phones

Everywhere You Look ...Technology

In today’s society and at the current point in history there is more technology and scientific innovation than ever before. We have cell phones that allow us to search anything we have questions about, connect with each other in an instant, and provides numerous other benefits.

Technology has improved the watch as well. Before now, watches simply told the date and the time, but this is not the case anymore. Now, watches perform countless tasks including monitoring aspects of health (for example: heart rate, sleep function), movement (for example: steps, and calories burned), and can also send messages and control music.

In this day and age, technology is literally everywhere we turn and everywhere we look. We often think of technology as a positive and good thing, but it is possible that technology can have a dark side. Technology, just as much as it can be good, can be bad as well.

Taking People Away from Real Life

Technology can be great, and with inventions such as Alternate Reality and Virtual Reality, technology can be exciting, innovative, and allow for experiences that would not be possible otherwise. However, technology can take us away from experiencing things in the real world. This may be obvious with virtual reality, where this technology puts an individual in another world that appears to be real but is artificial in actuality.

Other technology, while not quite as obvious, also can take us away from real life experiences. Examples of these technologies would be helpful to illustrate how various technologies can disconnect us from the real world. First, video games are a form of technology that often take individuals, especially children, away from real life experiences.

The Negatives of Cell Phone Abilities

Another form of technology that frequently takes people away from real life is cell phones. Phones first allowed people to talk from a distance, which granted people the ability to connect without being in the presence of one another.

Now, cell phones not only allow people to talk to one another without being in each other’s presence, people can communicate without even talking, via text messages or other form of instant messaging.

While this can all be beneficial, it also disconnects people from connecting in more intimate ways. Many times, people will be on their smartphones for hours and hours at a time. There are numerous things to do on smartphones (for example: social media, internet, and other applications) and oftentimes get people sucked in, scrolling on their phones for hours missing out on things going on around them in reality.

A group of people staring at their phones

Physical Issues Linked to Technology Usage

Sometimes, technology can result in physical problems as well…

Using computers, cell phones, and other hand held devices repeatedly, over time can lead to problems with the hands and wrists, such as with carpel tunnel. Many people will develop problems with their spine related to overuse of technology.

For example, with the overuse of cell phones that is so common today, people are looking down at their phone bending their neck in a way that alters their spine and hurts their neck. Cell phones and bright screens can also hurt the eyes and can impact sleep when used right before trying to fall asleep.

Inactive Lifestyle

Technology, while making our lives easier, can also lead to laziness and inactivity. Many children are spending countless hours inside looking at a TV screen, whether that be watching television shows, Netflix, movies, or playing video games instead of being active. This inactivity is leading to kids burning less calories and, in combination with a poor diet, leading to obesity.

However, children are not the only ones that are developing obesity at alarming rates. Adults in America are gaining weight at rapid rates as the obesity epidemic is out of control in the United States. Part of this problem, again in combination with an increasingly unhealthy diet, is the use of technology. People choose to drive a car instead of a bike or walk. Individuals will take the escalator or elevator instead of taking the stairs.

Technology Use in Moderation is Best!

Technology can be a wonderful thing. It can be very impactful in our lives and make our lives easier and more manageable. However, there can definitely be too much technology in our lives, and we need to be cognizant of how much technology we are using on a day-to-day basis.

Technology, if used too much, can take people out of the real world and put them in an alternate reality. Spending too much time in alternate realities, whether an actual virtual reality or whether in the internet, texting, or cloud can disconnect people from real life and forming real, healthy relationships. As discussed, spending too much time with technology can be bad for one’s physical health as well.

How To Make the Change

When looking to make a change to your technology habits, whether good or bad, consider a balanced approach. An important aspect to remember is that moderation is an important component when it comes to technology. This means not using technology too little or too much but finding a happy medium for one’s technology use is probably the best option.

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