Are Technology and Social Media making you an Addict?

We are a society addicted to our phones and devices. Today, we’re checking our social media constantly, which disrupts work and everyday life. We’ve become obsessed with how many “likes” our Instagram photos are getting instead of where we are walking and to whom we are talking.

A study from the University of Illinois found that addiction to, and not simply use of, mobile technology is linked to anxiety and depression in college-aged students.

Now, constant connection to the Internet via smart phones and laptops has changed long-established rhythms of human thinking. There used to be times when we were socializing and learning from the people and the world around us, and times when we were alone with our thoughts. “But it becomes much, much harder to practice the attentive types of thinking — contemplative thought, reflective thought, introspective thought,” says Nicholas Carr, author of The Glass Cage: How Computers Are Changing Us. “That means it’s very hard to translate information into rich, highly connected memories that ultimately make us smart and intelligent.”

According to Dr. Sherry Turkle, professor of the social studies of science and technology at MIT and author of Reclaiming Conversation, “If you can’t be alone with your own thoughts [ever], you can’t really hear what others have to say because you need them to support your fragile sense of self, true empathy requires the capacity for solitude.”

So, it seems that we are actually becoming less human the more we’re addicted to technology and our devices. This can be detrimental to health and happiness. We humans are very social animals. And we humans actually emit an energy field. Sometimes it’s called a vibe or a life force. Perhaps you’ve heard terminology such as Auras and Chakras, Chi, and Meridians?

Our energy fields can be healing. When we are in proximity to another person we are, in a sense, exchanging our energy fields. Yes, some people’s energy fields are draining and toxic, but you can make a choice to minimize your contact with them. But feeding off other people’s positive energy fields is something that can be uplifting and re-charging. You just can’t duplicate this chatting with someone on Facebook Messenger.

To be fair, research published in the journal World Psychiatry found that some smart phone apps (including digital programs like Headspace or MoodHacker) may help reduce a user’s depression. So, like anything, everything in moderation is the key to health and happiness.

I suggest a strategy of “unplugging” daily from your social media, computer and phone, etc. for at least an hour. And no sleeping with your cell phone! By the way, cell phones emit radiofrequency energy (radio waves), a form of non-ionizing radiation, from their antennas. Tissues nearest to the antenna can absorb this energy, and it may cause cancer.

My code-cracking health secret: Simply set aside some protected time each day for direct interaction with people—or for solitude and meditation without the interruption of a Facebook feed or text messages—and spend that digital-free time focusing on your relationships, and on activities that you really enjoy.

This is an excerpt from my new book; “Fitness and Anti-Aging Secrets: Cracking the Code to Looking and Feeling Younger in Mid-Life and Beyond”, available at

About Author
Jack Witt