I don’t remember exactly when, but it seems like technology has been a part of my life for a very long time. We had a computer when I was growing up. Granted, it was extremely primitive, but I could play games and do basic word processing. And we had a gaming console. As I got older, we started to have more tech gadgets around the house. My parents had a large cell phone. Not quite a Zach Morris phone, but definitely up there. And then when I turned 17, I got my own. It was an old school Motorola. All I could do was talk on it. But it was all the rage at the time. These days, however, you can’t walk down the street without bumping into someone using a smart phone. Literally.
So, the question I want to pose is – are we addicted to our smart phones? And is that really a bad thing? When I first started to think about this question, I started to think of all the negative ways that our phones affect our lives. But just as quickly, the positive things started to come to mind. Let’s explore some of them.
- We are constantly connected to the world around us.
This could be a pro or a con. Being connected means that we can get information faster. We can access news or weather, or sports scores immediately. We don’t have to sit by our phones at home to get news from family or friends. When a daughter goes into labour for the first time, she will be able to contact her parents to let them know. But at the same time, we are potentially in a place to feel overwhelmed by all that information. And sometimes the information we are presented with isn’t always positive. There are many things going on in the world today that we would either rather not know about, or at least not be constantly inundated with. Smart phones keep us connected to the good and the bad.
Smart phones are for more than talking.
As I mentioned, back in the day, you could only use a cell phone for talking. Maybe a bit of texting, but the technology has come a long way. As part of being constantly connected, we are also always able to do things with our phones. There are so many apps these days that let you be more productive, or track certain events in your life. There is literally an app for everything, and that, in my opinion is a big draw for people to use smart phones. From fitness apps, to social media, to podcasts, to health apps, to games, to being able to budget your finances, apps take the guess work out of so many things. Remember when you used paper to write out your monthly budget? Not any more. You can do almost anything from your smart phone.
While I think that we rely on smart phones too much, there are so many benefits that come along with its use that its hard to make a sweeping generalization that they are “bad”. Having an Apple watch, I can continually monitor my heart rate. I can also keep track of my workouts and use that to calculate how many calories I should be consuming in a day. Without a smart phone, I wouldn’t do this. It would be too hard to figure out how many calories are in the foods I’m eating, and how many I’m burning through my workouts. And what am I basing that on? Smart phones can be distracting. I spend far too much time on Twitter and Instagram when I need to get things done. But it also allows me to organize my day to make sure that I get everything done that I need to. What do you think – pro or con?