It’s no secret – we’re a society that relies heavily on the internet. As our technology becomes more advanced, we also increase our reliance on being connected to the internet 24/7. While this in itself isn’t a bad thing, it has introduced a unique issue – internet addiction.
If you ask the average person, they wouldn’t admit to being addicted to the internet. However, how much time do you really spend online each day? If you’re without access for a period of time, do you begin to feel anxious and disconnected? You might not realize how dependent you’ve become on having access to the internet on a regular basis. Here are some tips for dealing with internet addiction.
Start Timing Yourself.
The most important part of dealing with any addiction is recognizing that you have a problem. To do this, start timing exactly how much time each day you spend online. You can do this with a regular kitchen timer, or you can keep a running tally of exactly how much time you spend in front of your computer. Have an internet-enabled cell phone? Don’t forget to count the hours you spend on your mobile browser as well!
Make Time for Disconnection.
A good habit to get into is to set aside designated time each day (or each week) when you won’t spend time online. It’s best if this is a time you can stick to, since a routine is extremely important when dealing with internet addiction. This time away from your computer (and phone’s browser) can be a great way to let your brain “rest”, and realize that you don’t need constant internet access to be entertained.
Make Time for Other Activities.
I’m sure our children and grandchildren will be asking us, “What did you do in the days before internet?”. How will you answer this question? There are still a lot of fun (and entertaining) activities that you don’t need the internet to enjoy. You could organize a popcorn and movie night with your family. Or, you could plan a family camping trip for a weekend when you don’t have to work. Even a day spent outdoors hiking, kayaking or playing sports can be a great way to get your mind off of the constant need to be connected online.
Spend More “Face” Time.
Sure, you talk to your best friend on Facebook, but when’s the last time you talked face-to-face? Take some time out of your week to visit all of your local friends to have a “real life” conversation. You’ll be surprised at how much more fulfilling it is to interact with someone in person.