Am I Really Addicted To My Gadgets And Software?
I currently use an iPad, iPod Touch (for music), BlackBerry, Samsung Galaxy Tablet, one palmtop, a mini laptop and two highly sophisticated Laptops; not to talk of the highly powerful desktop I have in my study. What kind of life is that? Don’t I sound crazy to you? Who in his right senses would know the right thing to do and still fail to do it? Only a crazy person of course; only that I am crazy with style and class; I AM ADDICTED!!! Oh my, Unthinkable!
And I am not alone; I have once read of a woman who deactivated her Facebook account because she was concerned with the amount of time she spent on it. She said what had started as her favorite hobby (an urge to share and chat) mystically turned into a demanding and anti- social addiction that had practically taken over her life. The last stoke that broke her camel’s back was when she completely forgot about a long-planned reunion with a friend one evening simply because she’d been sidetracked by mindless Facebooking.
Wouldn’t it have just been perfect if everything had stayed just at the obsession stage? After all, there’s the possibility you might be obsessed about or with something and still not get that thing to the point of being addicted to it. I don’t know; perhaps if I had not been financially capable to possess such gadgets, I wouldn’t have been so involved and implicated. I wish I just only was obsessed with them; at least, I could look at them from afar off and WISH. Nothing more!
Presently, there is much wide-spread debate amongst psychiatrists and psychologists as to whether or not there is such thing as internet addiction. Some experts say it is becoming a major problem, and can be as destructive to a person’s life as an addiction to alcohol, gambling or pornography. There are worries about online games, social networking and virtual relationships replacing real-life friendships, there are so many it makes you feel like a Gaming Buffs and no slowing down in sight. But others say that the very idea of being to a medium of communication is ludicrous. Theses supporters claim it is like ironically saying someone is a ‘language addict’ or ‘thinking addict’, which of course makes no sense. With easy availability of smartphones for sale in OLX India, masses of people have ready internet access anywhere and anytime.
A study conducted last year found that while mobile phones were valued as a way to stay productive, there were downsides to being available at all times. The survey of 2,254 adults found that 44 percent of cell-phone owners had slept with their phone next to their bed and that 67 percent had experienced ‘paranoid rings’, checking their phone even when it was not ringing or vibrating. Still, the proportion of cell-phone owners who said they could live without it went up to 37 percent compared to 29 percent in 2006.
The Human Brain
The human brain uses a complex system of senses, thoughts, and feelings to help us survive our environment. Feelings, most precisely, play a very vital role in warning us that something may be wrong. The brain interprets all these signals and determines what, if any, action should be taken. What do you think would happen if that delicate system ceased to function properly? I’m not a psychology therapist or shrink, but I’m relatively sure it would be a real mess. Instead of processing our thoughts and feelings and doing something about them, we boot-up a gadget to help us do so. In other words, you are substituting your brain with a machine; little wonder we have Robots!
It’s a logical phenomenon; at work, you get pissed by your boss or worst still, a colleague; at home, your wife gets on your nerves or your kid does something real bad; on the road; you get annoyed by a bad driver; just name it. From time to time, each of us feels small, wronged and helplessly vulnerable; it’s only human. Under normal circumstances, you spend time comprehending, interpreting, and overcoming these feelings. But what if, instead of listening to your feelings and processing your thoughts, you play a video game, listen to your iPod, text or call somebody, Instant Message, e-mail, or check out the latest Hollywood trailer or some moronic reality show on YouTube video?
In short, you escape it for a while (at least you think you’re escaping); but you’re not. The original problem continues to manifest and nothing gets resolved. Unresolved feelings don’t simply go away; they become part of your survival mechanism, thereby aggravated, hence difficult to ignore. If those issues are ignored on a consistent basis, they fester like a wound that’s not allowed to heal. They begin to leak out anytime we’re reminded of them; and when you can’t get your fix on your gadget, you get overly offended, point fingers, become enraged, blame everything and everybody. You are as good as a ‘dead man walking’
Man’s Best Friend
What happened to Dogs? How do we tell them that because of our stupidity, their roles in our lives have been replaced by gadgets? How do we introduce these new best friends to friends and family? Perhaps we don’t have to; after all, they are also part of the cycle.
But I have one last scare for you; I give you just a few months, there might be no YOU anymore if you continue at this rate; your obituary (and funeral) will be my confirmation. You can avoid this; the ball’s in your court!
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