In today’s world, the Internet has given us great support for a diversity of reasons and especially to those young men and women, the teenagers. They use the Internet to do their school assignments. They sometimes use it to play games online, or shop from online stores i.e. amazon, eBay, etc.. It has greatly impacted their lives, and a lot of people have become so dependent on it to an extent they can’t live without it.
–Internet addiction by definition is the compulsive use of the virtual world despite the negative impact it could have on one’s life– HelpGuide.org
While time spent on the Internet can be very productive and efficient, compulsive or uncontrollable use can greatly affect the time we spend with family and friends, gatherings with classmates, and relationship with others. It can possibly change our day to day activities into a more isolated one.
Why the Internet can be addicting?
It’s there: It’s always there and you can reach it 24/7 through your computer, phone, tablet, etc..
Something to do: when we get free time, there is always something to be done on the Internet. You can read the news, chat with friends, search for new friends, check your email, watch videos, etc..
It’s comfortable: from home, you can reach all knowledge and information to finish up your work, research projects, and assignments.
You never know what you’ll find: the Internet keeps always updated with all the news and events happening around the globe which you can never feel saturation as it’s endless.
Know what’s going on: all of us use the Internet to be up to date with what’s happening around. It’s one major way to keep close to far friends and relatives, learn updates on the globe, be aligned with today’s trends.
No one knows what you look like: behind the screen you’re physically visible to no one. This for some makes it easier to communicate on a global scale and learn from others what they can’t in real life.
When do you know when addicted?
Losing track of time online: if you spend time online playing games, watching movies, or listening to music, etc.. to an extent you couldn’t remember when was the last time you ate or drank, then perhaps you’re using the Internet too much.
Isolation from family and friends: do you feel that most of the time you’re alone spending the time online, behind the screen with no companion? Is your family and friends life suffering because of your Internet use? Did you miss important events at home or school because of using the Internet?
Feeling defensive about your Internet use: do you become very defensive when your mother asks you to stop using the Internet to come for dinner or lunch? Does it annoy you when someone asks you to put down your phone when talking to them?
What can you do?
Put time limit: it’s always good to schedule your Internet use throughout the day. This way you can keep track of how long it takes and there you can manage. Let’s say you want to play a game online, put an hour for the game and after that you must take a break and do something else.
Decide what you want: the Internet offers a variety of services. You can do shopping, play games, chat with friends, and it’s very tempting. This is why you need to decide what exactly are you looking for and don’t just login to be there.
Find alternatives: as you can find lots of fun stuff to do online, you can find the same and even more offline or in the real world. You can plan a trip with family and friends. You can read a book. You can learn about new cultures through history and heritage. You can visit museums. You only need to look around and I can assure you that you’ll find a lot of stuff to do.
Take breaks: breaks are very important in anything you do. It helps you recover and manage your time better. Make it a habit of taking small breaks in between.
–better individual for a better society–