It is scary how much time and energy people spend using technology, especially smartphones. Americans on average check their phones 80 times a day. What is even scarier, is how much time students spend on their phones during school. One university found that students check their phones about 11 times during class.
One day, while taking notes during one of my teacher's lectures, I stopped for a minute and looked around. I saw almost every single student on their cell phone. I felt awful because this poor teacher was trying to educate these kids who were blatantly not listening as they were texting or scrolling through posts on social media.
I can't help but think that maybe this is a factor in why some refer to our generation as the downfall of society.
Now, if I criticized these kids for being on their phones during class, that would make me a hypocrite because I feel so addicted to my phone as well. I am frequently guilty of being on my phone in class. Whenever I have to put it away to take a test or quiz, I feel anxious. There is this attachment that a lot of kids have to their phones, and putting it away for 75 minutes seems almost impossible sometimes.
Scientists from Hong Kong and Seoul studied this attachment anxiety and said that because smartphones are advanced and personal to us that they have become an extension of ourselves. Our phones become our identity, and when we have to put it away, we feel lost; and that is where the anxiety stems from.
We scroll through Instagram and Twitter posts because we always have to know what is going on in other people's lives and in the world. Instead of living life or at least listening to our teachers, we are looking at life through a screen. It's a bad habit and an even worse addiction.
By being on their phone during class, students are missing out on an education. Not only are they hurting their grade for that class, but they are also hurting their futures. Common Sense Media found that the average phone user touches their phone 2,617 times a day. If this generation does not have the ability to do anything in life without checking their phone every 5 seconds, then maybe our generation will be the downfall of society.
We won't be able to keep jobs or at the very least excel at them because we won't be able to concentrate on working without constantly checking our phones.
People are so used to waiting for the sound of a ring from their phone or seeing their phone light up with a notification that has become impossible to resist. This is because, when you receive a notification, the chemical that makes us feel pleasure, known as dopamine, is released.
I found myself checking my phone so much that when I saw anything light up, like a lamp, I automatically checked my phone. It affected my life so much. I realized that I did not want to miss out on an education and I did not want to miss out on life because of my phone.
One of the things I have done to help with this bad addiction is to have my phone on silent all the time. Now I do not check it as much. I also turned off all notifications so I don't have my phone lighting up all the time. It is slowly working and I feel less anxious because I am checking my phone less and less.
If students just tried for one week to stay off their phones during class, I know that they will see some sort of difference in their lives. Maybe if this generation can spend less time on their phones, we can change this idea that we are failures of society and do something useful with our lives to better society. It all starts with putting our phones away in school.