Break Free From The Stimulation Nation

Written by Dr. Perry, PhD
Image Credit: Pixabay

“I believe people are afraid to be still because we’re used to being stimulated.” ~Michael W. Smith

When was the last time you sat alone in silence without anything or anyone to distract you? For many of us, it is difficult to be alone without something to entertain us or to focus our attention on. In its most obvious and prevalent form, the distraction comes in the form of our mobile phones. The real question then should be when was the last time you spent a day without your mobile phone? I accept that we all depend on our mobile phones for a myriad of reasons such as work, staying in touch with friends and family and in case of an emergency. The issue that I am seeing more often in my practice is the inability to put the mobile phone down or to stop constantly checking social media apps for updates. Further, there appears to be almost a fear of being on our own without a mobile phone or some other distraction.

The inability to tolerate quiet moments is something that we are being taught from the world around us. We are becoming a Stimulation Nation. Mass media, as well as current cultural norms, are promoting the idea that stimulation equals life. We are consciously and subconsciously being told that if we are not doing something exciting there must be something wrong with us.

Our phone provides us with an illusory sense of connection with others in the world. Of course, others may be interested in your social media life but the reality is that the majority of people who “follow” are complete strangers. They do not know you in the same capacity that your loved ones know you. By choosing to focus your energy on your phone you are wasting a precious life source. The phone is an instrument designed for communication but in reality, it has become an object that robs us of a meaningful connection to the world around us.

At the end of your life, what will have more meaning to you? Will it be the thousands of filtered images you spent “liking” on social media or the real-life moments you spent with loved ones? Realize that every single moment you spend looking at your phone instead of the face of your loved one is a missed opportunity of having a real connection. Your support group in life should consist of the interconnected arms of the real people you know encircling you with love, not the sporadic connectivity of the world wide web.

So how does one stop feeding the need for stimulation? You have to decide to stop allowing yourself to be programmed. Most, if not all video games and social media apps are carefully and thoughtfully designed to keep you hooked to their programs. It is all very Pavlovian. But, the apps on our phones are not training dogs, they are training us, humans, to keep clicking and coming back for more. The constant and consistent exposure to your phone has programmed your brain to become accustomed to an endless supply of stimulation and it will no longer be able to patiently wait for what is next. There is no idle time, only restlessness if left without new stimulation. This restlessness will cause you to seek new ways to pacify your brain’s need for stimulation in order to avoid the anxiety of silence.

Here are some steps that I use with my patients to help them become accustomed to less stimulation and learn to enjoy S. I. L. E. N. C. E.:

1. Start slowly
Do not rush into this without realizing that it may be challenging. You will need to acclimate to the “noise” of silence. Accept that you may not be able to be away from stimulation for long periods of time, but with patience and dedication, you can learn to wean yourself from the urge of constantly being on your phone.

2. Intent
The most essential ingredient to accomplishing any goal is to start. Set the intention to sit quietly for 10 minutes then gradually increase this time by 10-minute increments. The ultimate goal is for you to be able to spend time away from your phone without feeling that you have to check your phone. The phone should be an accessory in your life, not a necessity.

3. Listen
Listen to the world around you as well as the world within you. At first, the sounds of silence may be a bit distracting. You may experience a quiet buzzing or other noises in your ears or perhaps you will hear your heartbeat. Enjoy the quiet time for self-reflection. If you are taking a walk outdoors, enjoy the different sounds that nature has to offer.

4. Endure
Don’t give up. Be patient with yourself. Many times we are our own worst critique and this causes us to give up. Remember no one is judging you. Focus on the reason why you are trying to wean yourself off your phone. Life away from your phone and other electronic distractions can be more meaningful if you dedicate the time to building healthy bonds and surrounding yourself with positivity.

5. Nurture
Nurture your relationships with your loved ones. Perhaps being constantly on your phone has caused some disconnect in your relationship. Take the time to communicate and acknowledge that you have a problem. Together, you can create a system where there is accountability for over using your phone.

6. Create
Not having your life dictated by your phone or other electronic distraction will free up your time. Why not use your mind to create something beautiful. I believe that everyone has the ability to write and touch at least one person. Just imagine if you used all the time you spend on distractions on honing your writing skills. Perhaps if you unchained your brain from the internet you could write a beautiful poem or even a novel.

7. Enjoy
Once you have stopped the cycle of having to be constantly stimulated and are ready to exit the Stimulation Nation, put away your phone. Start enjoying your life while interacting and connecting with friends and family without having to disconnect to check your phone.

When it comes to phone use or any other electronic device, moderation is key. Cell phones are an amazing technological development that has benefited many areas of our lives. Unfortunately, it has become too much of a good thing and to some, it has become a bit of a Pandora’s box. You may hold the whole world in the palm of your hand but if you are not careful, your whole world will become limited to the size of your palm. I welcome your comments and would love to hear your insight on this subject.

The thoughts expressed in this blog post are my own and are not meant to create a therapeutic relationship with the reader. This blog does not replace or substitute the help of a mental health professional. Please note, I am unable to answer your specific mental health questions as I am not fully aware of all of the circumstances.

Dr. Perry

Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology
M.A. in Clinical Psychology
B.A. in Psychology

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136 responses to Break Free From The Stimulation Nation

  1. Roy Lennic says:

    So true. You may hold the world on your palm, but your whole world may also be that size of a palm. Technology helps us in ways we thought were very impossible, but they also steal us away from experiencing real moments.
    Phones bring us close to people from far away, but they also distance us from the people right beside us.

    We really need to break free.
    Awesome post, very educative.

    Liked by 9 people

  2. John says:

    Thank you for another great read. I find that I am unable to be at home without being on my phone or having something on to watch. I am going to try to disconnect and see how it goes.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Ines N. says:

    “You may hold the whole world in the palm of your hand but if you are not careful, your whole world will become limited to the size of your palm”.. SO TRUE!!! Everywhere I look everyone has there faces buried in their phone. It’s pretty sad.

    Liked by 7 people

  4. thelittlepeanutcluster says:

    Dr. Perry, after reading this post I realize that I am a part of the Stimulation Nation. What a great way to identify that. I need to take a step back from my phone, laptop and even iPad. I am constantly checking it… ALL THE TIME. It keeps me up at night pretty much ever night. It might be 3am and I am looking at my stupid Instagram or Snapchat to see who saw or liked what I posted. I am going to try taking a 10 minute timeout like you suggested. I know I need to start somewhere. You are so right about life being wasted and the world all fitting into my hand. What the heck! I don’t want my life to be that way!! Thanks for the thought provoking post as always Doc. You’re the best.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Bonnie says:

    I feel like this was written for me. I know that I use technology to escape. The world that I cultivate in my phone is just so much prettier than my real life. I guess the saying that whatever we choose to water will grow. I need to start watering my real life. Thanks for this post Dr. Perry💗

    Liked by 5 people

  6. Lex says:

    I love when I get the email notification that there is something new to read. Thank you for sharing your perspective. This post makes me think I may be on my phone too much!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you so much for subscribing to my blog and I’m glad this post resonated with you✨

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Sadje says:

    A timely reminder! Thanks for pointing the obvious flaw in our human interrelationships that we knowingly ignore. Much appreciate this reminder. Will show it to my family and friends too.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Great post, Dr Perry. When I am busy at work I barely glance at my phone for an entire day and I feel better for it. When I am sat at home alone in the evening or morning I can easily lose half an hour to the phone – even though I know it is bad for my mental health and a waste of time. My plan is to keep busy at home doing other things such as reading, writing and meditating and put the phone time to a much better and soul-nurturing use.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Our social reality. This is very true and very ironic – The phone is an instrument designed for communication but in reality, it has become an object that robs us of a meaningful connection to the world around us. – Thank you for the tips – SILENCE.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. TERRELYN SMITH says:

    Dr. Perry, you hit the proverbial nail on the head with this one. One very irksome behavior that I have seen has been when I am at a family gathering, and might be in the middle of a conversation with someone, then as I am talking to them, they get out their phone as the two of us are conversing with each other,then they “drop their gaze “from me and start texting. They seem to be hypnotic in their behavior with this device, and the end result is the rapid demise of their attention span and that they are no longer engaged in a conversation they initially perceived as important. I’m thereafter contemplating whether or not their over stimulated capacity*induced by the device reminds me of a child with a toy they are transfixed with. No one knows what the words “undivided attention ” mean anymore.
    You are right on about how it affects people’s abilities to engage in healthy social behavior. I believe that more meaningful relationships can result if those of us who remember “life before the Internet “, could be able to instill the antiquated *(according to this generation) * standards back into the social and familial net. What do you think of that idea?

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Vivian says:

    Thank you Dr. Perry. I think I’ve told you before I struggle with this. Being intentional about putting away my phone and enjoying my kids is something I plan on doing. I can tell a couple of my kids are frustrated with me and that motivates me to focus on accomplishing this. Bless you.

    Liked by 3 people

  12. rashu2015 says:

    Great tips! This happens to be the second post that I have read about staying away from mobile phone and experiencing our inner self. I take it as a sign to start practicing it.🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  13. I found it ironic that following a wonderful post is the option to “Follow on Facebook.” Everything you wrote is so true. Perhaps because I’m not of the younger generation, I do not check emails or social media on my phone except for when I am stuck waiting for something or just trying to fill some time, such as lunch alone at work. Sometimes I forget my phone at home when I head to work, and it is truly a freeing experience.

    Liked by 3 people

  14. Laura says:

    “At the end of your life, what will have more meaning to you? Will it be the thousands of filtered images you spent “liking” on social media or the real-life moments you spent with loved ones?”

    This is so powerful. When you really consider it, you never remember what images you’ve looked at on Instagram, what messages you sent over Facebook, and what videos you watched on YouTube. It’s scary to think about all the wasted moments we’ve spent craned over our phones in exchange for quality time with those we love. Very poignant and considered post, as always, and plenty of food for thought!

    Liked by 3 people

  15. Mike Levine says:

    Thanks for sharing another insightful post. I have been free from all social media for almost a year and I feel rejuvenated. I have a new outlook on life and have become more active.

    Liked by 3 people

  16. theoutspokenintrovet says:

    This such an amazing and heat-touching piece. I could not agree more with everything you have written here. We live in a state where people become so focused on the approval / attention from unknown people labelled ‘friends’ on social media that they ignore the real friends they have. The fact that my generation is the generation with the highest levels of anxiety is no coincidence with the introduction of social media. People want the perfect highlight reels to show others that they forget to live their normal lives and that real friends, will be there to share all kinds of moments, not just the ‘perfect’.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Wonderful post. It is hard for younger than me (77 yo) generations to adapt to silence. Fortunately for me there was a lot of silence in my upbringing and less distractions. It is difficult in today’s world to find silence….just ask a room full of people to be silent for one minute!

    Liked by 4 people

  18. Wonderful info to share (as usual)! So happy I do not need a smartphone. I’ve also disconnected from cable TV and radio noise. Perhaps, being an HSP, it is easier for me to do this as over stimulation is stressful. I love to be able to hear myself think, and to think for myself.

    As the saying goes, “Don’t jump in, if you don’t want to jump out.” Friends (and society) often chide me to get (hooked) on technology. But, I love the genuine freedom I have without it. My landline and answering machine work just fine. I don’t need a phone while I’m doing other things. That also keeps me “in the moment,” and, therefore, more peaceful.

    Liked by 3 people

  19. Lisa Simpson says:

    Great post. This is something I think everyone should read.

    I recently started turning my phone off at a certain time every evening. I hadn’t realized just how much I missed the silence. Disconnecting seemed almost terrifying at first, but now I embrace it any chance I get.

    Liked by 5 people

  20. This truth cannot continue to be ignored. One day the bow will break and we’ll be reminded that someone warned of the unsafe weight. Thanks, Doc. I’ll share it.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. Endure and Nurture
    Yes, sometimes we need to take a break to absorb and observe the world around us. Such a beautiful post. Disconnecting to connect with your own self is very very important.
    Thank you, Dr Perry.

    Liked by 3 people

  22. In grad school I became interested in a branch of psychology called Ecopsychology. The idea of disconnecting with civilization, or rather, connecting with the natural world, is at the very heart of Ecopsychology. I am thankful we live in a day when the science of how nature makes us better humans is beginning to be understood. From Florence Williams’ The Nature Fix to podcasts like Hidden Brain, there is an explosion of research aimed at understanding our relationship with the environment, and it all starts with putting down the phone. Thanks for posting.

    Liked by 3 people

  23. Marlene Lima says:

    Very good!Totally agree! We should focus more on the real world. As you said, media should be used with moderation. Silence is the best way to discover and develop ourselves. You explain it in a very educational form 😊

    Liked by 3 people

  24. unchew says:

    Good stuff Dr. Perry working with my special needs son has also created a different dynamic with this. For me I have trouble disconnecting for sure. I don’t want to be one of the parents ignoring their child as the child is on a device too. I have been increasingly intentional about this.

    Liked by 4 people

  25. Lara says:

    Excellent post and I agree. We all need a time every day to be silent and in the moment. Too much stimuli these days everywhere we go. I only do social media when I’m on the computer. I find that having access to that on my phone is a bit extreme as I want to look at it more and I want to be in control of what I do. I wish I could experience complete silence; although I can’t as I have suffered from tinnitus ever since I can remember.

    Liked by 4 people

  26. I work at a public library and about a year ago Crayola kiosks were installed with ipads for small children to use. At first I thought they were cute, not so much anymore. Have you ever tried to get the attention of a single-minded toddler whose only ambition is to get to one of those kiosks first? Gone are the days when I could engage a little child for a few moments to inquire about the funny hat they were wearing or to ask what kind of book they were looking for. It is very frightening to watch children so absorbed in new technology. It seems even the smallest child is well versed in how to use an ipad, tablet, or cell phone. It’s not cute, it’s alarming. So-called “social skills” are becoming a thing of the past while younger generations rave on about the newest app or the newest features on their phones. Unfortunately it has become an addiction that cannot lead to much good. Thank you for this article. It is much needed and I hope it is shared far and wide.

    Liked by 2 people

  27. terreblogger says:

    Thank you Dr. Perry. I totally agree with you and will be sharing on my social media sites to get your very important message out — of course with credit to you. Thank you again!

    Liked by 3 people

  28. That’s very true. The ghostly shackles around out wrists and ankles, the dark googles to our eyes, and lidocaine to the skin… Cripples, blinds and numbs us from this world while it imprisons us in a virtual cell.

    Thanks Dr for reminding us of this. 👌

    Liked by 4 people

  29. I had to stop – everything – four years ago when I suffered an adrenal exhaustion. I had to retire early as a result. I spent the better part of a year sitting in a chair in my living room just looking out the window at the river going by. Four years later I must still be careful about how much I do on any given day. I still don’t have a cell phone although I do have an I-pad and yes, I do follow social media more than feels an acceptable amount of time. But in the silence of that first year, I learned to be still. To just watch. And listen. And observe. I am realizing a lifelong dream of writing and more at peace than I have ever been. There are good things waiting on the other side of the discomfort of disconnecting. Thank you, Dr. Perry, for another awesome post…

    Liked by 2 people

  30. Great read, thanks for the friendly reminders! ❤ So many of us are addicted to instant gratification when it comes to positive thoughts and feelings. And yet…so many are addicted to the struggle of excuses when it comes to ACTUALLY living our lives in peace and happiness. ❤ Ironic…the bird feeder that is technology and instant gratification. All we have to do is become aware of WHY we turn to the "noise" of distractions over truly living our lives by our soul's peace and contentment. Great post! ❤

    Liked by 3 people

  31. Thank you so much! I loved this. I so agree. I love photos I’ve seen where people have a basket on the table and at dinnertime, no electronics allowed, giving the family time to just be together. Still, I’m with you. People are feeling unfulfilled unless a phone is in their hand and they check everything and everyone, but it’s such an illusion, it’s not real communication, in depth meaningful. Hopefully those that are doing so will realize sooner than later!

    Liked by 3 people

  32. Hilary Tan says:

    “You may hold the whole world in the palm of your hand but if you are not careful, your whole world will become limited to the size of your palm.”

    Beautifully said! Next time I have the temptation, I will remind myself to reread your post as a reminder to why I need to spend more time in silence.

    Liked by 3 people

  33. Okay once again great timing for me to read this. I’ve been trying to wean off my phone yes I have been checking it a lot in the past week but that’s because my son left for Basic Training , and I did not know how long he would have access of his phone to reach me. Before training time he was in a week of a wait and so no phone and waiting and waiting and I believe nothing to do .. he wrote many letters in three days and said a lot of thinking and realizing so many things … like what matters and how much he misses us …and many other things with so much emotion.hmm I’m thinking if he had had access to his phone he would never have thought about any of this . He constantly had his phone while home .. hmm ..I know he misses us but without the phone is brain was actually letting him feel and focus on this. Well I thinking it’s possible. To the effect. Yes phones .. computers are great but we are abusing this . Thanks for a wonderful and insightful post.

    Liked by 2 people

  34. JR says:

    I know I keep saying that, but your articles always manage to find me at the right time, or maybe I find them. Though I believe it’s a mutual give and take in which we find each other, always at the perfect time. I needed to read this, because years ago someone very dear to me told me to focus less on Facebook, and the essence of what the comment meant just sank in now reading your article. For me FB was always a way to stay in touch with friends and to stay connected when we’re far away from each other. But even so – without following strangers – there is the danger of not taking in subtle signs of communication in real life. What especially touched me is your comment about everyone being able to touch at least one person, because that’s always been something important to me, touching people with my pictures and words.

    As an aside (not to make this too long), here in Finland people really do value silence. It’s been an interesting experience contrasting what I was taught in American (high) schools (always say hi to everyone you see and know in the hallways or suffer social death) with people either looking down so as to avoid greeting you if they’re not sure of how close you are, and where sitting in silence next to your friend is perfectly acceptable and signifies having a good time.

    Liked by 2 people

  35. sreeyal says:

    Very nicely put, Dr Perry; SILENCE- a very thoughtful update.
    My only reason I look at my phone, even to just scroll is, when I take my kids to any birthday parties or activities, parents form in their own known groups, and I feel left out as they stand in closed circles. It happened at my work place lunches too.. when I was new to any place. These latter instances, were days there was no social media. Now, when I am at places, where my friendly approach is not reciprocated, I use my phone. Also, I can avoid unwanted attention.

    Liked by 3 people

  36. Suz says:

    Great message to young and old, Dr Perry. A must read with useful list of strategies to help those caught in the trap … Thanks, Suz

    Liked by 4 people

  37. Wow , this is so true. You know, I used to live in a hostel with 4 roommate in outside of one Indian cities.
    Again, I should repeat, that no electronics device was allowed there. We all thought it would have been a prison, but who would have thought that it was the best heaven ever. The fun, knowledge and meaning of life. We all got to understand there.
    I have also written a blog in it.
    Read it if u have the time.

    Liked by 3 people

  38. anniegoose says:

    i LOVE sitting in silence – i do it as often as i can – nightly for at least an hour.

    unfortunately, i’m married to a man who is a media junkie – he has to have the TV on 24 hours a day!!! he even sleeps with the TV on – very irritating.

    so when he goes to bed, i watch the few shows i like then i turn the TV off and listen to the silence.


    Liked by 3 people

  39. Great post, thank you for sharing, Dr. Perry! Just recently, I had a conversation with my mom about how much time we spend online/on social media without actually meaning to. We’re obviously both from generations well versed in using landlines, snail mail and paper maps but infinite scrolling & co. still mess up our brains badly.

    Liked by 2 people

  40. MaKupsy says:

    I loved this post mainly because I’m currently practicing this. I’m on almost every social media platform but every once in a while I take a step back and deactivate my accounts. I’ve notice that each time I do that my creative juices start flowing and I’m able to write more blog posts and enjoy the simple pleasures in life.

    I hope a lot of people get to read this. Social media can easy suck you in if you don’t take control.

    Liked by 3 people

  41. Peter Corr says:

    Great post..I think the tentacles of the attention industry have found their way into every aspect of our lives…for many of us, they have become our life. My remedy is to return to the practical; painting, photography, playing an instrument…a challenge that requires focus and time investment. The rewards are there for all of us but we have to wean ourselves off instant gratification. That’s the trick I think. Keep up the great work


    Liked by 2 people

  42. laronda65 says:

    I’ve found the biggest reason I’m attached to my phone is that I dread time alone with my thoughts. Actually, now that I think of it, it’s along the same reasoning I have for overeating – I don’t want to be hungry. Both are uncomfortable for me, so I avoid them as much as I can. Great post!

    Liked by 3 people

  43. Elliot_the_Aussie says:

    I am definitely described throughout this post. I have known for some time that my technology use has been out of balance. This post shed some light on this and I feel provided me with the amount of confrontation that I need to commit myself to really tackling my addiction. Thank you Dr. I have much work to do.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you Elliot. The first step to overcome any problem is to admit that there is a problem. Don’t be too hard on yourself and take it one day at a time✨

      Liked by 1 person

  44. virginio says:

    Hi, Dr Perry, I found this topic ultra-interesting, mostly because I opened this post by chance, just after having taken my mobile instead of being silent while drinking tea for breakfast. And before taking my mobile I just thought that I was renouncing to be on my own, preferring to be distracted.
    This summer I attended a three weeks meditation workshop where the use of mobile and any other communication devices was “forbidden”. I had no difficulty being cut off from the rest of the world. But there I was in the nature with another group of fellows doing the same thing, and even if we were asked to always stay in silence, even when eating together, it was quite easy to listen to the inner world and to the world just around me.
    What I find difficult, here in Milan, a big italian city, is doing the same. Around me there’s not a living, intelligent and entertaining nature, but inert walls. The sense of inutility, boredom, isolation is unusually deep and strong. Hence the strong impulse to divert from this uncomfortable sensation.
    Our deep alienation, I think, is the result of a social life all the more away from nature and quite completely devoted to be profesionally efficient, like intelligent robots.
    Thank you Dr. Perry for this stimulus of reflection.

    Liked by 3 people

  45. Bee says:

    Great post! I am starting to wean myself off of my phone. I have started to put it away when I am with family and on weekends. It has inspired me to be more healthy by spending more time doing activities instead of sitting at home staring at my phone.

    Liked by 2 people

  46. Somewhere in CA says:

    My fiancé is addicted to his cell phone. I think I express my concern daily but he has such a hard time putting it down. It’s almost like there is a third person in the relationship. Thank you for this post. I am sharing it with him.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you for sharing your experience. I hope this blog post helps him realize that he may have an issue worth addressing✨

      Liked by 1 person

  47. Luci Russo says:

    As you stated, “You have to decide to stop allowing yourself to be programmed.” This is the key to it all. We now live in an over stimulated environment and need constant breaks. I know I do. I also have a rule that when I’m around loved ones, nothing else matters. The phone can simply wait. Thank you for writing this as I know many people needed to hear it. 😊

    Liked by 4 people

  48. d_analyzt says:

    I noticed I am more creative when I’m alone ..sometimes I get distracted with the urge to check my social media . the funny part is that I use my phone to write. So its kind of difficult not to get distracted. Sometimes I discipline myself to write before checking my phone or read before checking my phone . phones are big distraction for us but we need it .

    Liked by 3 people

  49. William J Remski says:

    A very thoughtful post. I don’t have a smart phone, and never have. The connected world is still a big part of my life through this desktop computer. The thing you point out in your post, that I notice most about cell phone use is how it isolates people from those around them. It is also a source of interference with activities. When I watch videos, I watch videos. When I cook dinner, I cook dinner. And many years ago I learned that online friends are not really friends at all, they are at best acquaintances. What concerns me is how we are raising children attached to iPhones from an early age. I have seen three year olds with the things in grocery stores while their parents almost totally ignore them.

    Liked by 2 people

  50. Susiewoo says:

    I love peace and quiet. I have a smartphone and all the usual accoutrements of this technological era but believe they should be an enhancement rather than a necessity. I love the fact that I can carry a library full of books on my smartphone for when I have a quiet moment and can digest whatever literature takes my fancy. I love the fact that I can stream music whilst out walking but I also love to be able to turn it off and fully drink in the sights and sounds of things around me and relish the ability to be able to get lost in my own thoughts with no other distraction. When out with friends or family, the phone is stashed away in a pocket or my bag and is forgotten about while I concentrate on the conversation. Seeing people permanently glued to their screens makes me so cross that I want to shake them hard and try to bring them back to reality – my way of dealing with that is to rant in my own blog as I’m not keen on getting arrested just yet 😉

    Thank you for your educational post – I hope more people affected negatively by technology will read it and take the time to digest it!

    Liked by 2 people

  51. Sue says:

    I love the acronym you use S.i.l.e.n.c.e. I have a rule in my relationship that we have to put away our phones when we are together. At first it was difficult but i actually love disconnecting and being present in my life. Thank you

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Thank you. I am happy to hear that you are placing more importance on the time you spend with your relationship than with your phone✨

      Liked by 1 person

  52. kenyattayamel says:

    I worked for an agency which fed my addiction to checking my phone constantly. No one was checking me which seemed strange. Soon I will be ina very different environment where using my personal phone will be discouraged. Ironically I almost never answer phone calls. So this will be a learning experience.

    Liked by 2 people

  53. Feministka says:

    I think that social media is a great tool to connect with others and can be used for business purposes as well. However, it cannot buy you back the time you had spent using them, so we should be more focused on the present and our loved ones.. because at the end of the day the thing that is the most valuable is the time and we should spend it well. Thank you for this post, I like your topics and the way you write, so readable, interesting and your vocabulary is so sophisticated. Cheers from Slovenia

    Liked by 3 people

  54. Fantastic post. So very true. I have beings in my reality who can no longer seem to hold a conversation because of that wretched phone in the hand. It is insulting to say the least. But alas, it seems to be the new norm.

    Liked by 3 people

  55. Mary says:

    This is something I have to work on. For my New Year’s Resolution I am deleting all my social media accounts. Wish me luck!

    Liked by 2 people

  56. W.W. says:

    I love the term “stimulation nation.” It’s absolutely true. We all walk around hooked to our phones waiting for the next buzz in the form of a tweet or like!

    Liked by 2 people

  57. PatNewMex says:

    I have been off Facebook for probably 8 months or more. I do NOT miss it one iota. In fact I bet I have saved my sanity from the ongoing, irritating ads, suggestions, click bait, and so on. I tried Instagram and used it for about 3 weeks. Off that too. Now I converse with peeps face to face, or go out for a walk, or take photographs. Or I walk the dogs. I even started a new project of compiling old family photos! (the kind printed on actual paper.) Yippee! I do not feel the need to ‘share’ so much stuff in a public format. Instead I think of who might like to see what I have been up to and call, chat, email, or make a date with them. I want more genuine connections. Thanks for the article.

    Liked by 4 people

  58. About two weeks ago I randomly started removing “friends” from Facebook. By the end I removed everyone. My phone is now being picked up far less. I’ve had more time with my kids and wife. I wanted for them to join me in the idea of putting away the devices more. And it’s working. One of the best things I’ve done for myself and my relationships.

    Liked by 1 person

  59. Many of One says:

    Thank you for this discussion & your point of view. I’ve watched “on-line” grow into such an amazingly huge platform. I was drawn due to online to try and easy my social anxiety. Online, I was able to have the ‘false-protection’ of anonymity [back then..90’s] which lessened my morbid fear of being judged as stupid & able to express myself w/out the constant fight or flight response; as in person. When my anxiety would ‘flare’….simple, I’d log off.

    That is not the ‘on-line’ world today. Exposure is a HUGE overtone & EXPECTED. I, out of the blue, ditched social media & deleted my account (wordpress not included) the end of last year. It has been the best thing I’ve done for myself in a long while. My children claimed everyone thinks I’m dead now & they wanted me back on social media….I let my children know, if they are of my friends they have my phone number [which very few have & they have all ready kept in touch].

    It had became, to me, a certain amount of sick plasticized transparency of other’s wanted/witnessed realities of gluttonous proportions (not excluding myself for awhile). I started feeling more of subject on display; one of my very disliked feelings. I had even tried setting my preferences to make sure my content was of more ‘uplifting’ in nature & always had only a few “friends”. Yeah, nice attempt…but still over stimulated (especially, I personally believe, for people who live w/mental illness)

    In my solitude & silence is where I feel the most safe & sane…This rabbit hole, internet, is a bottomless pit with amazing benefits and the capability of ruining the infrastructure of true human interaction/connection…the possibilities are endless…keep it as a tool and not consuming our precious presence of our personal existence(s).

    A bit passionate but not bitter nor jaded. It’s all different degrees that we need to learn how to handle it for our own personal benefit not hindrance. Ty for your insight

    Liked by 1 person

  60. Vihani says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more!! You have nicely put the meaning of the whole content into this sentence “You may hold the whole world in the palm of your hand but if you are not careful, your whole world will become limited to the size of your palm”. Thank you for the great article, and yes enjoying the beautiful sounds of the nature is one of the best healings ever.

    Have a nice day😊

    Liked by 1 person

  61. What you describe, I believe, is a symptom of an evolutionary change from wild, free and dangerous to safe and less. We crave our lost connections demanded by the human momentum toward safety and security, something all creatures value, but with us powered by an overpowering default to rational, unemotional solutions.

    Wherever the evolutionary tree grows, however isolated a branch or a leaf, the roots still pull hard.

    PS: Funny coincidence to be reading this today as I was gearing up to right about the evolutionary hazards of rational safety.

    Liked by 1 person

  62. I think we could all take this to heart.

    This is somewhat related. I read about a study where the researchers scanned brain activity when people read. They observed that many young people don’t reach a deep level of concentration and hypothesized its because of their digital environment. There are so many distractions on their screens and information is in bite-sized chunks that it’s affecting them negatively and inhibiting this ability to reach this deep level of concentration when reading longer pieces.

    Liked by 1 person

  63. Sybil F. Bull says:

    Thanks for writing this. I feel the same way. Are you ok if I share it on my page for Saturdays​ post?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dr. Perry says:

      Yes, but please use the reblog tool on WordPress. When posts are copy and pasted it impacts the posts ability to be found through google. Thank you

      Liked by 1 person

  64. It was difficult for me not to check the phone, as you mention. I asked my husband to put a child lock on the internet portion (with a password I do not know, though in an emergency I can access it but have had no temptation to do so) and I chose only the sites that I needed to use ( a couple of radio stations, a dictionary, various organizations I belong to, and sites that apps I needed might depend on, such as the YMCA class schedule or AAA). I have maps, email, and so on still functional as apps. If I want to search the internet I have to go to the big computer and fire it up. I removed myself from social media except for my blogs. This system has worked well for me as I can see I have gained a lot of time, I returned to thinking my own thoughts, and I took in my exposure to the news and so on in more moderate ways (rather than a constant barrage). It’s worked well for me. I had not noticed how fractured my day and often my thinking had become. Glad I made the change.

    Liked by 2 people

  65. toobehuman says:

    “if you are not careful, your whole world will become limited to the size of your palm.” that line really hit me. I’m currently doing a week without a phone and this post honestly really motivated me to continue.

    Liked by 1 person

  66. Heather Dawn says:

    Great post! Our culture especially has learnt to live life in full speed. And as damaging as it is to our mental health as adults, I believe it is especially damaging to our children. You gave great ideas on how to slow down and take a breath. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  67. I’m a big fan of a bit of turning off the phone and TV – just having time to think/read/listen to music! Our connection with ourselves and other people is key to our wellbeing – social media and TV make it too easy to mindlessly zone out of real life. Thanks for such an interesting read. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  68. I stood with a group of approximately fifty people looking at the Mona Lisa once. I was the only one not viewing it through a screen.
    I think this is a great message. We need to look up more. Look up from the screens and see whats in front of us. Look up and smile at the person approaching or see the sky.

    Liked by 1 person

  69. So pleased to see your post on this, Dr. Perry. For awhile, I have been contemplating many of the points you address here. You may or may not recall this is an issue I am passionate about. Thankfully, not having fallen into the technological trap, I LOVE silence and often find it disturbing that medical offices blast a TV when they are supposed to be places to get well. (I gave up TV a few years ago). Silence and being in nature are soothing to my spirit; it’s most often technology that produces anxiety one way or the other. While your information is very beneficial, and I hope many will partake of it, I also find it quite sad that our culture is in such a state as to need constant stimulation.

    Liked by 1 person

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