The internet has enabled us to be more connected to other people than at any time in our history. Advancements in technology allow us to do amazing things on our computers, but at what cost? This has lead to people spending far too much time on thier computers. In terms of relationships I feel we have sacrificed quality for quantity, and have less meaningful friendships as a result.
People are spending an ever increasing amount of time sat in front of their computers instead of actually spending quality time with other people. Sitting in front of your computer is the easier option than actually getting up and doing something beneficial!
We all know that once we’ve developed a habit it is hard to change it. Research suggests it takes around 66 days of consecutive action to change.
No one ever said on their deathbed, ‘Gee, I wish I had spent more time alone with my computer’ – Danielle Berry
Which websites do you check every day without even thinking? How long do you spend on them? Think of the time you are wasting. There’s so much more to life.
Of course many of our jobs demand that we are on a computer for many hours of the day and the thought of even having a lunch break to some people may be absurd! I just want you to think about the amount of time you are spending on your computer; how effectively you’re using that time and what else you could be doing instead.
Here are 5 signs that you should think about spending less time in front of a computer screen.
1. You Eat Alone In Front Of A Computer
Whether you live alone or not doesn’t matter. If you do live alone then you should eat at a table and focus on eating your food and actually enjoy eating. You’re less likely to prepare good quality food if you’re not going to pay attention when you’re eating it.
If you live with other people then eating together is very important. It’s a great time for social interaction and to form strong bonds.
Eat your food away from your computer and focus on enjoying it and conversing with other people if you can.
2. You Spend Nearly All Of Your Free Time On A Computer
Because you’re spending all your time on your computer you spend less time on the things that are important for your health like exercising, eating healthily and getting a good night’s sleep. You haven’t got time to go to the gym or prepare good quality nutritious food and you stay up late on your computer. Staying up late or even in some cases, getting up in the middle of the night to go on your computer will decrease the quality of your sleep.
Over time you will be more tired during the day and your body will crave stimulants to give it energy. People often turn to alcohol, caffeine, carbohydrates and other drugs.
Set yourself a limit of how long you will spend on your computer every day and reward yourself when you stick to it.
3. Your Main Form Of Communicating With Other People Is Using Your Computer
Sending someone a message on social media does not have the same impact as actually talking to someone on the phone or in person. A lot of conversations on social media tend to be superficial so you may actually never get to know someone really well. Sure you may have 10 new ‘friends’ on Facebook but do you actually ever talk to them?
Skype is a wonderful way of keeping in touch with people who are physically too far away to meet up with. Why not start saving up and plan a trip to see them?
The internet is a great tool for meeting new people but try your best to meet them in person. Communicating with people in person has more meaning and you can form a stronger bond.
4. Showing Signs of Computer Addiction
Computer addiction is defined as an excessive use of a computer which interferes with daily life. Computers can control your life in a number of ways, with the most popular being computer games and social media sites.
Some of the main signs that you’re addicted to your computer include
- Spending longer than you intended to on the computer
- Becoming irritable when you can’t go on there
- Missing occasions or functions
- Using your computer as an outlet for stress
- Finding it difficult to do normal tasks like laundry and cleaning.
Can you relate to any of these?
5. You lie to others/yourself about what you’re doing
If you say to yourself you’re just going to look at your emails or check something and then you spend hours on your computer doing other things then you are lying to yourself on a regular basis because you know exactly what’s going to happen. You have to take responsibility.
If you have to quickly minimise the screen so other people can’t see what you’re doing then you’re probably doing something that is not productive or good for you.
Unfortunately all of the by-products of spending too much time on a computer, including reduced fitness, tiredness, reduced personal interaction and a poor diet, are all causes of depression.
Especially when you have them all at the same time! If you’re very depressed then it becomes more difficult to interact with people, look after yourself and get out of your house and do things, which makes going on the computer seem so much easier and more attractive. It is a downward spiral.
It’s tough to stop doing something, to take something out of your life, without first planning what you’re going to use as a substitute. The most important thing is to find something else to do with your time.
If you’ve got nothing else to do then it’s easy to spend all of your time on your computer.
Volunteer somewhere, take up a new hobby, go to the gym every day, ring people you know and explain you have a lot of free time on your hands and you would like to help them in any way possible.
Believe me, you’ll find it a real challenge to change and keep the change going, but you’ll be happier, healthier and not only will your own life be enriched, but so will the lives of those around you.
If you’ve read this post and have disagreed with every point then I think that’s a pretty good sign that you should spend less time on your computer.