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Mental Health

Reminder: Life Gets Better When You Put Down Your Phone

I have absolutely no right to be writing this article. None. I’m addicted to my phone just as much as the next person. I tend to use social media as a stress reliever or a way to “relax,” but it’s probably one of the greatest sources of stress for our generation.

Recently, I had the privilege of sitting in a mindfulness seminar at work. We learned about grind culture (which is a whole different article for me to write — I could go on for years about that one) and the true definition of mindfulness and self-care.

When I say “mindfulness,” what comes to mind? Deep breathing? Yoga? Sure, those are some mindful practices, but did you ever think about putting down your phone?

While many of us turn to our phones and devices as stress relievers or a way to wind down, it is best to shut them off completely and find something else to do. In my mindfulness seminar, the speaker explained why we should swap out our phones for a different mindful practice as often as possible.

Let’s circle back to the topic of grind culture. We spend all day grinding. Everyone I know is hustling between class, work, extracurriculars and maintaining a social life. It’s exhausting, but I think it’s safe to say that the majority of us love it. I know I do. Why should I write my paper over the course of a few days when I can crank it out in one sitting along with three other assignments? It’s stressful in the moment, but I feel so accomplished when the job is done.

Believe it or not, our brains do not want to run all the time. As a matter of fact, it is begging for us to slow down. In the mindfulness seminar, the speaker suggested that we put our phones down every so often. We turn to our phones as a crutch, another way to “grind” and keep ourselves busy. Participating in grind culture and taking on a myriad of tasks is often glamorized today. This is the exact reason why so many people in our generation suffer from burnout.

Your phone is just another pointless task to keep your brain running 100 miles a minute. Here’s a piece of advice — STOP IT!

I’ve made some easy swaps and found myself so much happier. Instead of scrolling before bed, consider investing in a coloring book. If you find yourself buried in your phone on the walk to class, pop your phone in your backpack and just observe. Tap into your senses; notice what you hear, smell, feel and see.

Ever since I started this practice, I’ve noticed things around campus I’ve never seen before. I’m only here for two more years; it’s time for me to really appreciate what’s going on around me.

I know how this article makes me sound. I promise you, I’m not a hippy-dippy, give up your cell phone and go off the grid kind of girl (although, sometimes that sounds really, really nice). I love my phone, but I love myself more. Give your brain a break and step away from your tech every so often. I promise it will pay off.

Macy is a Pittsburgh, PA native with a passion for reading, writing, tree-hugging and music. She is pursuing a major in Biobehavioral Health, while double minoring in English and Sustainability Leadership on the Humanities Track. Outside of Her Campus, Macy spends her time with her golden retrievers and her camera.
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