Reliance On Technology

Reliance On Technology

A realization of my reliance on phones and computers.
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Each morning when I wake up and every night before I go to sleep, I check my computer and my phone. It is almost automatic and I don't even realize that I am doing it.

I check to see if I have any messages on my phone and then I check my computer to see what I need to get done. I continue to turn on my newest Netflix series, browse through social media, or type out an essay for one of my classes.

A couple of days ago, I pulled a classic "Audrey Move" and poured water on my laptop. I wasn't surprised that upon taking it to the Apple Store, my computer was "no más."

The first thing to come to mind was the price of fixing the damage. However, I noticed in a few short hours how much I relied on my device to organize my days, save important information, provide me answers to my everyday questions, and satisfy my need for entertainment.

I found that my phone was decreasing in power much more quickly than normal as I attempted to use it to compensate for my computer use.

With this being said, I have recently had an unsettling awakening to a hard truth. My life is in many ways, controlled and reliant on a piece of metal.

When making this statement, I start to go into denial even though I know this to be the case.

Although it is a horrible thing that I spilled water on my computer, I can't deny that it is providing me a fair amount of clarity. The reality is, my knowledge, my activities, and my entertainment sources should not be limited to my technological devices.

I miss reading books, journaling on paper, going on frequent runs, going to movie theaters, and having the serenity of disconnecting from the outside world at times.

No, I don't want to give up my technology and I would be a hypocrite to say I did. However, while writing out this article on a piece of notebook paper, I am finding that there is a certain appreciation I have for taking the harder, more time-consuming routes while processing my thoughts.

I am learning that when I can access any movie at a click of a button normally I don't think anything of it. Now that I can't turn on my Netflix and have to write my article with pen and paper, I can see that the instant gratification I receive with my technology can be detrimental.

This facilitation is hindering my ability to have an appreciation towards the simple luxuries I am blessed with each day that I often take for granted.

Hopefully, this minor setback will give me an opportunity to come back more appreciative of the help technology provides me on a regular basis. This technology cleanses may be just what is needed to practice being more self-reliant than technologically reliant.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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21 BuzzFeed Quizzes To Take When You're Trying To Procrastinate

Why study when you could be on BuzzFeed?
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According to my previous article, 12 Things That Are Only Acceptable In College, spending 2.5 hours taking BuzzFeed quizzes is completely acceptable if you're in college. With it being that time of the semester when the list of things to do is never ending, sometimes it's easier to just ignore your problems and spend your studying time procrastinating. If this sounds like something you need to do, here's the ultimate list of quizzes to waste your time on.

1. Reply To Your Crush's Texts And We'll Reveal Your Future

Wondering what you're going to do with your life since you're probably going to fail that exam that you have tomorrow? After all, you are taking BuzzFeed quizzes right now instead of studying. This quiz will answer that question for you.

2. Which "Gossip Girl" Character Are You Based On These Random Questions?

This one's a classic that you just can't possibly skip.

3. Build A School Uniform And We'll Guess Who You Were In High School

If you're like me, you always secretly wished you had a uniform in high school so that you didn't have to pick out an outfit every morning. Now you can live out that dream and find out what it says about you.

4. We Can Guess Your Age After You Build Your Own Dream Home

If I got 70's, does that mean I have timeless taste or terrible taste?

5. Pretend To Go Shopping And We’ll Figure Out If You’re More Ann Taylor Or Ann Taylor: Loft

Ladies, this is an important one.

6. Plan Your Day And Find Out Which "Grey's Anatomy" Girl You Are

Maybe if whatever you're doing right now isn't working out, you could become a doctor...

7. Create A Makeup Look And We'll Tell You Which Hogwarts House You Truly Belong In

Or you could become a wizard.

8. Pick An Outfit And We Will Tell You What You Do For A Living

And if neither of those work out, this quiz will tell you exactly what you should do.

9. Spend All Your Money At This Drug Store And We'll Tell You What You Should Be Doing With Your Life

And in case you didn't like either of the previous suggestions, you can see if this one is any better.

10. Build A Dream Castle And We'll Tell You What Type Of Unicorn You Are

Since unicorn everything seems to be the rage right now, you'd better keep up.

11. This Reverse Word Association Test Will Uncover Your Personality Type

This one's for those of you who don't have the patience to get through the Myers-Briggs test.

12. Design Your Future Backyard And We'll Reveal How Many Kids You'll Have

If you're going to have more than 2 you better get back to work so you can support them.

13. Pick An Outfit From Patagonia And We'll Tell You How Long You'd Survive In The Wild

Find out if running away to the wild is really a better option than struggling through that 10 page paper that's due at 8 am tomorrow.

14. Which Character From "The Office" Are You At YOUR Job?

Let's hope you don't get Kevin.

15. Which Meryl Streep Character Is Actually Most Like You?

Are you as mean as Miranda Priestly?

16. Take This Picture Test And We'll Tell You Your Best And Worst Qualities

No need to prepare for your next interview, just give them these answers.

17. What Kind of Bathroom Guest Are You

Are you actually a terrible guest?

18. What % Gross Are You Actually?

Or maybe you're just gross in general.

19. Your Food Preferences Will Reveal Which TV Character You Are

Are you more Blair Waldorf or Michelle Tanner?

20. What Grade Are You Getting In Life?

Are you literally failing at life right now?

21. What Type Of Emoji Are You?

Instead of a signature scent, you can have a signature emoji!

And if these didn't take you long enough, you can always check out BuzzFeed for more.

P.S. Good luck studying for that exam. Maybe you can find a quiz that tells you how to ace it.

Cover Image Credit: Julia Waterbury

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The Fake World - My Personal Experience On Instagram

Body Dysmorphia, Followers, and Posting Photos—How can Instagram NOT affect my mental health.

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The sticker on Kendall Jenner's phone says, "social media seriously harms your mental health." Despite her heavy presence online, she and many others are taking steps towards pointing out the dangers of Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and other social media.

While it may seem like a source of inspiration, social media (Instagram in particular), seems to be causing people like me more negativity than anything else.

"People like me…", what does this mean? I am a 19-year-old female college student with serious body dysmorphia. By definition, body dysmorphia is "a distinct mental disorder in which a person is preoccupied with an imagined physical defect or a minor defect that others often cannot see." Those with the disorder often perceive themselves as ugly or obsess over ways to improve their physical appearance.

I grew up in the ballet world—one that emphasizes your weight and bases a large amount of success on attaining a specific body type. The ideal silhouette is long, willowy, and malnourished-looking. I have a more muscular build for a ballet dancer. Some days I see myself as a beautiful person on the inside and out, and other days I am the complete opposite.

My body dysmorphia comes and goes, but I know this: every time I open the Instagram app, I become consumed with my physical appearance and attaining the perfect body. I end up in a comparison game that I did not sign up for, obsessing over my imperfections and ultimately feeling unhappy despite all the blessings I have been given.

I initially created an Instagram to follow the trends—everyone at the time (when I was in middle school and high school in the 2010s) had an account and posted cool, artsy photos. I wanted to join in because I liked being behind the camera. Soon enough, however, Instagram started to place emphasis on being in front of the camera and now, seems to be a competition about who can look the best and show the most skin. As someone who is not always comfortable in her own skin no matter the outfit, it becomes quite the struggle to keep up with the followers, likes, comments, and appearance of being confident.

It was not until this year that I started to realize "the fake" in just about every photo on my feed. The "Instagram models," real-life models, and others post constantly because it brings fame, attention, and for some, confidence. I applaud anyone who believes Instagram is a positive in their lives, but many people that I know feel the same way I do—even without explicitly saying so. I am constantly reminding myself that people pay to have their photos edited. There are other apps like Facetune which are designed to alter the real-you into Instagram-you. I believe Instagram is wishful thinking—wishing you really look like what you post. While I take part in the comparison game, comparing every part of my body to famous models, I do not take part in the paid editing game. I do not have apps that will give me a jawline or thinner legs. I do not have an app that will change my face shape. I do not applaud myself on this, as I am more self-conscious than ever and have not posted a photo since February.

However, I am strong enough to know that the fake world on Instagram does not take into account real-life aspects like someone's charisma, personality, voice, behavior, etc. It does not guarantee you friends, likes, or happiness. It is taking a chance to put yourself out there, however you wish. It is up to you to interpret what you see and have a sense of your own self-worth.

With this being said, Instagram does come with some benefits. There are a few brave souls who are not afraid to post un-edited photos and who do bring awareness to the falseness and extreme editing. Instagram also comes with accounts not dedicated to selfies, but that serve as platforms for important causes such as human suffering, pollution of the earth, animal brutality, and the like.

Instagram is overwhelming with its positives and negatives, and it is up to me to decide what to believe and what to perceive as false. I find it helpful to take breaks from the app by logging out. Whenever I do decide to post next, I will do my best to post for ME, thinking about my own well-being and creating a positive message for all.

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