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5 Simple Joys Of Life That Were Changed By The Smartphone

5 Simple Joys Of Life That Were Changed By The Smartphone

The first smartphone, as we know them today, was released in 2007 by Apple. Now, almost a decade later, we are tied to our smartphones. Especially millennials, who seem to be born for using smartphones. And it’s not just me who is saying this: studies also show it!

According to a survey released by Bank of America, 4 in 10 millennials confess they interact with their smartphone more than they interact with their own families. The survey concludes that millennials( aged between 18 to 34) interact with their smartphones more than anything else or anyone else ! Another report, this time by Experian, showed that 77% millennials own smartphones and spend more than 2 hours a day using them. This is more than any other age group and reveals a significant change in millennial’s behavior.

As half of all millennials say they couldn’t live without their smartphones (according to a Pew Research Center survey), I made an effort to remember how was my own life before the smartphone entered it.

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And YES, there was a life before the smartphone, as older millennials, who know the “joy” of owning a Nokia phone and the struggle of catching a couple of hours of decent Internet speed on the dial-up, will remember.

Back in those times, technology was not that easy and we lived our lives AFK and away from (smart)phones. While the millennials are connected to the news and the Internet, they are disconnected from life and I have found 5 simple situations to prove my point. Here are some pure joys of life that were completely changed by the invention of the smartphone.

1. Having a meal

Since the humanity managed to craft a table and put some food on it, the eating time was also talking time. Since the arrival of smartphones, most people now eat mindlessly, swiping and texting on their devices. There are no more interesting talks carried out on the table, as everyone is trying to connect to the strongest WiFi.

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2. Driving a car

What are people doing the second after they stop at the red light? They browse their smartphone, looking to unlock the iPhone 7 or get a glimpse of the latest joke online. This is the case for drivers, but the car passengers are browsing their smartphones the entire ride.

Before we had the Wi-Fi at our fingertips we used to chat in our cars. Back then cars were never silent, as we used to joke, talk and sing for the entire ride. We used to communicate, as well as, admire the scenery.

3. Watching TV

Few people are aware of the fact we now consume media via 3 different channels, at the same time: we watch TV, we play a game on the tablet and read the news on the smartphone. The TV time is now multitasking time, which means we only drain our minds and eyes, instead of actually watching a movie or playing a game.

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4. Concerts and events

Social media is great for sharing personal experiences, but it has a strong negative influence on our lives, as it prevents us from actually experiencing life! When you attend a concert or an event, you will see how 90% of the audience is trying to record the moment, capture a photo or a video.

There is nothing wrong in shooting a couple of photographs, but recording the entire event and sharing it, then texting to your friends, simply prevents you from actually attending the event! Recently, people had been asked not to bring their smartphones with them at concerts, in an attempt to prevent the “sea of smartphones” phenomenon and have people watch the show they’ve paid for.

5. Spending time with friends and family

When you hang out with your family or friends, the smartphone should be left aside. However, nowadays, everyone is interacting more with the mobile devices than with the persons around. The smartphone managed to intervene between couples, in their very bed!

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Parties are now much quieter than they used to be, as everyone is browsing social media or doing other things with their smartphones. This lack of face to face communication puts a toll on our lives, making it harder for us to actually communicate with other people.

Without the smartphone, many millennials feel they don’t have anything to talk about, which makes them socially awkward in the long run.

I certainly miss the times when my friends and I gathered around the table and chatted about everyone and everything. There were good times, which are not going to come back anytime soon.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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