Welcome to the reality of just how dependent we’ve become on technology and in particular, our smartphones as we explore how they’re changing our physical and social lives.
Smartphones can cause stress.
Multiple studies have shown that excessive smartphone use can lead to brain changes that are linked to depression and anxiety. Although smartphone addiction is not yet classified as an official disorder in the latest edition of the DSM, internet addiction in general is listed as a disorder in need of further research, as an issue of “significant public health importance.”
It’s known as NoMoPhobia; the irrational fear of being without your smartphone.
Even though our phones are causing us heightened levels of anxiety , we literally can’t bear to be away from them. One study found that when people could hear their phones ringing but couldn’t answer them, their levels of the stress hormone cortisol spiked. Another study found that up to 90% of people feel phantom vibrations, and that we can go into panic mode when our phones are on low battery.
People of all ages may realize just how dependent they are on their phones and yet be unaware of the signs of NoMoPhobia. A common subconscious thought may be, “Why should I change my habits? “It’s just the way it is these days!” It may be “the way it is” but ultimately, is it a healthy choice?
Q. What are we giving up while our heads are looking down at our smartphone’s constantly day and night?
A. Human Connection, Thinking, Creativity and multiple Hours of productivity per day
“Phones are inanimate objects. We talk Through them, not To them.” —KOS
Here are sample responses to a statement that I ask within my EFT Tapping practice as we begin our work to lessen the effects of NoMoPhobia:
If I did not have my cell phone with me, I would feel…
• anxious because I couldn’t communicate instantly with friends
• worried that my friends couldn’t reach me
• uncomfortable without constant access to information
• afraid of getting stranded somewhere without my phone
• weird because I wouldn’t know what to do
These responses combine thoughts and emotions which manifest as limiting beliefs such as “my friends won’t like me if I don’t respond immediately.”
Research shows that when exposed to social media or sugar, the response in our brain is the same: It produces the “feel-good” neurochemical called dopamine, which brings on feelings of pleasure and motivation. And when we’re repeatedly exposed to pleasure-producing stimuli like the ping of our cellphones, our bodies react and adjust. Then we need more with repeated use, just to feel a marginal pleasure boost – and, eventually, just to feel “normal.”
Change begins with awareness.
“Take the time to be aware of the hours you spend on your phone.” — Ruby Taylor, representing a well-informed teenage cohort in Southern Maine.
EFT Tapping is a science-based holistic modality with lasting success utilized by millions of people across the globe. Share your response to the cellphone statement above at karen@karenstclairEFT.com