Many of us panic when we do not have our mobile phones around. It’s now addictive that we feel helpless without a phone. There is an unreasonable fear lying beneath all of us. A feeling of uneasiness surrounds us the moment we see a low battery notification or interruption in signal.
This fear of being without our cell phones or should I say the fear of not being able to connect to the digital world is known as Nomophobia. It is an abbreviation for no-mobile-phone-phobia. Today, with the increasing usage and dependence on smartphones, Nomophobia has become a rising trend among youngsters. Not just youngsters actually, our extreme dependence on these devices has become an addiction in almost every age group now.
The advancement in the mode of communication has brought significant changes in us all. Somewhere in the persuasion of the virtual world, we are all forgetting to live in the real one. Be it me or you, we all have experienced the fear of missing out on a digital activity, the addiction towards notifications that the moment we get it we within seconds seem curious to check it.
We are living in an era where most of us can’t imagine life without our cell phones. According to a study in West Bengal, India 42.6% of Medical and 44.6% of Engineering students accept themselves suffering from extreme nomophobia. Ironically where there’s a cell phone in every hand today; Nomophobia is considered the most prevalent mental disorder of the 21st century.
The Modern-Day Phobia:
Yes, it’s a modern-day phobia. Our generation is born in the digital world and so we live in the era of smartphones. We post stories and deliver our daily stuff. A constant reminder of not missing out on any notifications. Carrying our power bank everywhere or just constantly looking at our screen and scrolling down the social media. These all are symptoms of Nomophobia.
[ Also read: Life beyond Social Media: A Faded Reality!]
In today’s world we shout out our emotions and our voices through our feeds, but when it comes to sharing it in person we all become extremely rigid. We are not the generation who appreciates what our eyes capture rather what our camera captures. Every single notification to posts and stories creates social anxiety to many of us, that’s the reason why we instantly swipe our screen after a popup.
Nomophobia is not just an addiction. According to a study conducted back in 2005, overuse of cell phones is also due to psychological factors such as low self-esteem or extroverted personality. Henceforth, when these people lose connectivity they find themselves helpless and alone. Moodiness, sleep deprivation issues, or such psychological factors, which bind us to our smartphones, are all symptom of Nomophobia that we simply ignore.
Causes of nomophobia: an extensive impact.
The impossibility of having the connection digitally with the other person has changed our daily life. Any person who develops nomophobia goes through four stages- initiation, affirmation, need, and dependency. All starts with social media where each one of us is available today.
From social anxiety to psychological a person who is turning into NMP soon starts to develop physical problems. It starts from anxiety when a person is unable to connect and it leads to emotional instability, and psychosomatic symptoms. Symptoms such as discomfort in bones, joints, eyes not just that but NMP also leads to sadness and depression.
How to avoid nomophobia!
1. Distraction from social media: Yes, you read it right. Simply sitting and scrolling down social media drives us into the virtual world. To get out of it we all need a distraction from social media life. We can simply spend some time along with our friends and family members. We can sit in an open area breathing fresh air, keeping our cell phones locked. Remember not to lock yourself in your cell phones.
2. Fight technology with technology: If you are unable to distract yourself, install applications that restrict you from using your phone after several hours. This has proved helpful to many youngsters who are in addiction to their cell phones.
3. Allot timings to use your phone: Stop checking constantly what’s going on, rather do some other work. This method is a little difficult if you are already in the middle of nomophobia. So what’s better is try leaving your cell phones behind when you do other work.
4. Be realistic: We know what’s real and what’s virtual, the difference is we are habitual of using our cell phones. Many of us are attention seekers, checking how many people are watching our stories, how many likes did we get. Honestly, this shouldn’t matter because the real ones are next to you. The day you will accept this you will be out of the virtual zone and so the nomophobia.
Appreciate what’s real!
It might sound cliche to you but remember we all have got just one life here. Yes, so don’t be a fool to spend it on a 5.5 inches screen. Constantly looking at that screen, looking at what others are up to, or seeking validations in the forms of likes and shares is not what you got this life for.
Seek your purpose, look around there are real things to appreciate, real feelings, and real-life to live in. Mobile phones were developed with an idea to connect people better, but today rather than connecting it is distancing us from real humans. This article is just a little reminder for you to be attentive that it’s you who is controlling the thing in your hand, and not be controlled by it!