"Is The Technology That's Supposed To Be Helping Us, Depressing Us?"
With everything going on in our lives, you would think that technology would make it easier. Technology is supposed to help us, right? It's a source of entertainment, it helps us list out and track items that we need to do, and it helps us to keep up with our finances and stocks. All of these are positives, but what if, in reality, technology is making us depressed and causing more stress in our lives?
One undisputed fact about the technology/depression correlation is that computers can ruin our sleep patterns and habits. Thus, affecting how our bodies heal and recuperate during the day. As we all know, the day after a bad nights sleep leaves us feeling worn down and morose. A huge problem in the modern times came with the internet. It has created what's known as 'digital information overload'. With all of the news, knowledge, and entertainment from around the world at our fingertips, our minds just cannot handle the overwhelming influx of data. Our minds get so in tune with it that when we are away from the internet, it is lacking the stimulation it was getting making life seem boring.
Believe it or not, your smartphone may be playing a major role in why you may be depressed. With the constant need to be successful and to 'keep up with the Jones's' it's no surprise that we feel 'less than able' when we can't keep up with the constant technology changes. We constantly compare ourselves to others who have the latest and newest technological gadgets. We are never satisfied with what we have. It doesn't take much to see that this constant race to keep up can make us mentally and emotionally tired. Not only that, it can depress us in major ways. This desire to be better, be the best, was even proven by scientists done on two primates. It's actually ingrained in us, as humans, to feel this way. That's why all these technological manufacturers make so many new and updated gadgets, they know that the human race will always want newer, better, and faster.
A recent survey found that about 1 in 5 people say they feel depressed as a result of social media usage. Some workplace companies have even implemented a network management system so that employees refrain from using computers to access social media while at work. This not only keeps work flow at a steady pace, but it also keeps an employees personal life from entering the workplace atmosphere. It is hard to keep social media at bay when it is literally everywhere one looks. Academic studies have actually proven that regular social media use can lead to anxiety, isolation, and low self-esteem. We are constantly posting intimate moments of our lives, believing that we are posting to 'true friends'. Friends whose opinions matter. When in reality, it doesn't matter at all. We are again putting ourselves in yet another never-ending race to keep up with and be better than others. It makes one wonder, if it's making us depressed, why are we still using it?
In closing, why not try some of these tips to combat 'technology depression'. Refrain from using the internet or social media when you are in a particularly vulnerable moment. Don't scroll through your newsfeed or social media accounts right when you wake up or right before you go to bed. If you're an employer, consider implementing a computer management system. Lastly, only add friends who you know personally outside of social media to your social media accounts.