Be a better problem solver
If you are like us, some of your best ideas and solutions come when you are day dreaming, taking a shower, letting your mind wander or having a great conversation with friends. And you might notice that all of those things are pretty damn hard to do with a phone in your hand. In these down times, these ‘gaps’ we recruit complex regions of the brain, including the ‘executive network’ which is associated with complex problem solving. Research has demonstrated a correlation between individuals who tend to daydream and an ability to generate new ideas.
Meaning? More daydreaming, less live-streaming.
There is a bucket-load of research showing a very real association between excessive technology use and anxiety. And the culprit here is dopamine. Created in various parts of the brain, dopamine is a pretty busy guy and finds himself involved with processes like thinking, moving, sleeping, mood, attention, motivation, seeking and reward. We get a dopamine release when we receive stimulants like social media notifications or text messages. As a result, this release encourages pleasure-seeking or validation-seeking behaviour, which creates a perfect storm for mental distress.
Meaning? Too much of your device can quite literally make you paranoid.
This one isn’t particularly new: Our brain releases melatonin a few hours before your bedtime, reducing alertness and making us more like to drift off. The blue light emitted by our divides can prevent/slow the release of melatonin meaning delayed, poorer quality sleep. Ok, you think, I’ve heard all this before. But what you might not have heard is what that lack of sleep might be doing to you. The list includes increased obesity, diabetes, heart disease and hypertension, impaired immune function and decreased life expectancy. Yikes.
Meaning? Continued device use before bed = poorer sleep = a potential range of scary health problems.
Have better relationships
In a recent Forbes study, 3 out of 5 participants claimed that they spend more time on their devices than they do with their partners. That shit cray. A phone cannot love you, a tablet can’t be a shoulder to cry on and they are both rubbish at giving foot massages. Disconnecting from your phone after work means you have the time to reconnect with your friends or other half.
Meaning? If we are not intentional with our usage, digital devices can effect our ability to build or maintain relationships.