Going Off the Grid

Is it time to put down the phone for a while?

While that might seem like a broken record—we’ve all seen those articles about millennials being addicted to technology—maybe it’s time to start considering it. Admittedly, the online-world is exciting, and it can be a lot of fun to get involved in all of the hype. Social media and texting can help you stay in touch, follow trends, stay updated on current events, and so much more. But this positive side to technology can distract us from some of the not-so-great side effects.

Social media can give us this unrealistic idea that life is picture-perfect. All you will see while scrolling through someone’s Facebook profile, Instagram, or even Snapchat story is vacations, parties, and other fantastic events. You start to think that their life is that perfect, since that’s all you see. And this limited view of people’s lives can make you start to question your own; you compare your less than perfect moments with their seemingly perfect ones. The reality is that no one’s life is truly as amazing as their profiles and accounts make it out to be, but they only let you see the best parts.

You might be thinking to yourself, “What’s wrong with that? People want to show off their fun times, why shouldn't they?” Well, the problem lies not so much in the posts themselves, but in the effects it can have. Constantly being exposed to that limited content, and continuously comparing yourself to what you see can become pretty toxic over time. Subconsciously, you can start to put yourself down, feel isolated or excluded, or start thinking you’re not “good enough”, “cool enough”, or whatever else it might be.

This brings us with the big question: should we log off for a while?

Our recommendation? Give it a try! Whether or not you’ve noticed this “dark side” to being online, chances are you’ll find it oddly freeing. Sure, there is an abundance of wonderful things about technology, but there are also a lot of good things that come with stepping back from that world.

So go forth, log off, and good luck!

 

Junior at St. Catherine University, majoring in psychology.

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