Have you ever felt like you can’t live without your phone? Have you ever felt less like yourself when you’re grounded and don’t have your phone with you? Well, you have a reason to feel this way.
Recent studies at the University of Missouri show that being away from your iPhone actually causes separation anxiety. People were put in a room and given a crossword puzzle but were told that they could not keep their phones with them due to bluetooth interruptions. The subjects’ heart rates increased and so did their blood pressures. After their phones were taken away, the subjects experienced symptoms of anxiety and their puzzle completion accuracy and speed were very poor.
To further test this, the experimenters called the subjects’ phones and saw their reaction. Since they could not do anything about the ringing phone, they sat there helplessly and felt anxious and disturbed. Doctor Russell Clayton, who was the leader of the experiment says, “iPhones are capable of becoming an extension of ourselves such that when separated, we experience a lessening of ‘self’ and a negative physiological state.”
People say our generation has become too attached to phones, and this statement may just be true. It has come to a point where it is almost healthier for people to have their phones at all times than to be separated from their phone.
Ben Bagbek ‘18 feels like he could never live without his phone. “I rely on it. Every bit of entertainment comes from my phone and life would be pretty pointless without it” the Freshman says. However in a later claim, Bagbek said that he does not feel less like himself without his phone, but still admits to checking his phone every five minutes.
However this phone separation anxiety does not stop at iPhones. Those who may have Androids, Samsung Galaxies, or other phones will also experience this emotional trauma. Eamon Kelsall ‘18, a non-iPhone user, says that even though he does not have an iPhone he “would not be able to live without my phone”. He feels as if his phone is such a big part of him that when he’s not with it, he actually does feel less like himself and confesses to his mood shifting if he does not have his phone on hand.
If you just purchased a smartphone, it is not too late to keep yourself from this addiction. Spending every second of every day on your phone – iPhone or not – can be damaging to your mind. Remind yourself that there is no need to check your texts, messages or notifications every moment of your life. Because if you do, you might just miss your life passing by.