Ook beschikbaar in het: Dutch
I’ll be damned, the French have done it: phone addiction has been dealt a powerful a blow. From this school year onward, it’s now forbidden to carry a mobile phone on your person! That applies to all students up to the age of 15, and it doesn’t only apply to schools, but also sport clubs. I’m sure that there’s a lot of negative things that can be said about Macron, but this is quite the accomplishment: be gone, phone addiction!
Is phone addiction a big problem?
‘You’re riding a bike and then you get a call…’ a woman laughs when she gets interviewed on the street in 1998 about the next big thing in those years, the mobile phone. A man says: ‘I won’t get called, I’m not that famous’.
Less than 20 years later, a young person in the Netherlands picks up his phone 150 times per day on average to contact the world. Say that we’re sleeping for 7 hours per day, that still leaves 17 hours, so we pick up our phone 150/17 = almost 9x per hour! That is more often than once every 10 minutes…
How bad are phone addictions?
A phone addiction won’t result in lung cancer, hangovers, or liver cirrhosis. That’s not the problem here. There’s 2 other problems.
Every 10 minutes you react to the impulse: ‘what will this message contain?’ ‘How many likes do I have on Facebook?’. This strongly stimulates the impulsive part of our brain -also referred to as the lymbic system or the reptile brain. In a sense, you become hyper-sensitive to impulses, which doesn’t make it easier to resist other temptations such as buying, drinking, smoking, eating. On the contrary.
In my opinion, a phone addiction is the mother of all addictions. And that’s why we need to educate. We need to set rules regarding when it is and isn’t appropriate to have a phone in our hands. See France.