Why We Find It So Hard to Unplug From Our Devices

By Dennis McCafferty  |  Posted 2016-03-31 Email

As the iconic fictional film character, Ferris Bueller, famously put it: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it." Today, "looking around once in a while" means putting away those mobile devices—something that Americans try to do, with varying degrees of success, according to a recent survey from the Harris Poll. For some professionals, attempting to unplug is a weekly effort. Others make an attempt to unplug at some point during the year. Either way, challenges abound. Many Americans admit that they suffer anxiety when they don't have their smartphone with them. Others fear "missing out" if they unplug—even for a little while. And some people think that unplugging from technology is unrealistic, given the 365/24/7 demands of the modern business age. However, individuals who do manage to take the leap acquire the priceless gift of quality time—with family or friends, or just some quiet "me" time. Conversely, a number of Americans take advantage of unplugged time to do some paperwork. Nearly 2,200 U.S. adults took part in the research.


Dennis McCafferty is a freelance writer for Baseline and CIO Insight.


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