Recently I attended a seminar on how technology, while a great assert in society today, can also lead to problems like addiction or having a disconnect from reality. It is often tempting to immerse yourself in the newest Netflix series or videogame where you can escape for hours at a time and momentarily forget about your worries in real life because all of your attention is focused on what's going to happen next in Game of Thrones. And this isn't necessarily a generational thing either, as many people 40+, who grew up without technology, have admitted to having somewhat of a reliance on it.
As I'm sure many can relate, I've often found that going out without my phone feels like going out without wearing clothes. When a group of people are sitting around and run out of things to say, the most common thing they will do is pull out their phones. In fact, the phone is often used as a social clutch. People tend to instinctively bury their head in their phone whenever there's a quiet moment in any context. Sometimes it makes me wonder how people handled social situations and boredom when phones didn't exist. It seems almost incomprehensible. This may not necessarily be as much of an issue if, say, you're sitting on a train with a bunch of strangers, but families and friends may find themselves less connected in real life as a result.
As was mentioned in the seminar I went to, a good way to reconnect with the people around you is to simply talk about what you're doing on your phone, whether it's to share that funny video you were looking at or that interesting thing you were reading about. It's one way to bring people together without foregoing the phone entirely.
Something else which was mentioned was that it's generally a good idea to sit down at least once a week with your family and friends and have a conversation completely devoid of technology use. While this is definitely easier said than done at first, it is an ultimately rewarding experience.
This summer, make it a goal to reconnect with the world around you. Spend time outside, whether it is just riding around on a bike, petting a dog, or simply taking a walk. Limit your video game time and as tempting as it may be, don't make it a habit to watch 8 episodes of a show in a day. Netflix will still be there tomorrow.