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Unplug: A necessity to live mindfully in a digital world

Post by on Sunday, September 12, 2021

First slide
“Sometimes you need to go offline and get your life right”
Humans have a biological predisposition to form an attachment to social partners, and they seem to form attachment even toward non-human and inanimate objects. Similarly, people also form attachment toward the technology. Technologies are creating an enormous ripple in the pond of human behaviour. Twenty first century has given countless technological breakthrough. Since then, technology appears as if it has become a necessity. Almost everyone in the world is into technology. It has even been used as a status symbol. Now, We have forgotten a world without technology because we have become lost within digital world. People have succumbed to relying on technological developments, and without a smart phone in hand, laptop at the ready and Kindle in the bag, some do not even know how to act in society.
Our society has evolved into a bustling society of technology. Where once there was nothing more than ink and paper, the world today might not be able to exist without app-filled phones, a texting-based language and, most importantly, instantaneous access to new information. With such inventions and innovations, we have created our own alternative means of communication and broken the boundaries that hindered making vast connections.
For an Instance, Now apart from making phone calls and sending text messages, smartphone users have immediate access to the internet, social media and network systems, e-mail accounts, video clips, music files and a vast array of phone-based software apps.It is the ease with which smartphones can be used, the ability to pour out one's life into the apps and networks to which it connects that brings emotional baggage to ownership. For teenagers, journalists, business users and other professionals, it is even considered something of a social faux pas, a sign of being inept not to have a constant connection with the outside world via one's smartphone regardless of the circumstances one finds oneself at any given time.
Are you Online ?????
The biggest question ever asked in history is the existence of human beings. Now the biggest question of existence is “Are you online” ???.
Being online has become a symbol of human existence. Amidst being available and using online platforms becoming an obligation more than a leisure activity, people of all ages are preyed upon by Fear of being offline . The ultimate fear of being offline. However, youngsters do contribute more to the anxiety and constant pressure of perceiving to be online at all times. For example, having your ‘last seen’ on or having your read feature, ‘blue ticks’, activated on your WhatsApp assures friends, colleagues and family members of your availability. A reason for this could be the longer time spent by young people on social media platforms for communicating more than older people.
Due to uncontrolled situational variables and individual variances there comes a time where if being offline is prolonged a person’s mind does psychologically become impaired due to the constant fright of losing out on trends or keeping up with the world; since to them the world has become nothing more than a virtual belonging.
What  is FOBO ???
FOBO, the fear of being offline, refers to the anxiety related to missing something important if you're not plugged in at. all. times. It's that separation anxiety you feel if you don't have your phone on you; the panic that comes upon realizing the fact you are not able to access the social networks.
How to Deal with FOBO ???
There are several steps that can be taken to cut down your FOBO if it is something you experience.
Research shows that a fear of missing out can stem from unhappiness and dissatisfaction with life and that these feelings can propel us into greater social media usage. In turn, greater engagement with social media can make us feel worse about ourselves and our lives, not better. In this way, it helps to know that our attempts to alleviate feelings of fear of missing out can actually lead to behaviors that exacerbate it. Understanding where the problem lies, however, can be a great first step in overcoming it. The following can help.
1. Identify your Fear
The first step to overcoming your fears is acknowledging your fear. Many fears and phobias are irrational and psychological in nature. But to uncover your true fears and overcome your fears, you need to identify why you feel the way you do. Do computers or the internet bother you for a reason in particular? So to get to the root of the problem, then you can conquer your fear.
2.  Accept, Acknowledge and Break it
The way we respond to stressors is a combination of how we’re wired and how we were raised. It’s both nurture and nature. 
First, if you care about something and it’s not going how you wanted, you should feel upset. Give yourself permission to feel upset or anxious, rather than feeling like you must always put on a happy face.Say out loud to yourself how you are feeling, regardless of how silly you may feel. Then try saying the same thing to a trusted friend/relative or family member. You may be surprised how similar their feelings are to yours. It’s a fallacy that individuals should be fearless.You can learn to understand and accept fear, which reduces its paralyzing impact . Simply put, acknowledging the fear is important to being less scared of it.
3. Change Your Focus
Rather than focusing on what you lack, try noticing what you have.  As long as you are focused on things which are not controllable like when the internet comes, how long this will last. Then you are wasting your energy on factors that will not move you forward rather increases anxiety and fear.
4. Seek Out Real Offline Connections
You may find yourself seeking a greater connection when you are feeling depressed or anxious, and this is healthy. Feelings of loneliness or exclusion are actually our brain's way of telling us that we want to seek out greater connections with others and increase our sense of belonging. Unfortunately, social media engagement is not always the way to accomplish this—you might be running from one bad situation right into an even worse one. Rather than trying to connect more with people on social media, why not arrange to meet up with someone in person?
Making plans with a good friend, creating a group outing, or doing anything social that gets you out with friends can be a nice change of pace, and it can help you to shake that feeling that you are missing out. It puts you in the center of the action.
5. Focus on Gratitude
Studies show that engaging in gratitude-enhancing activities like gratitude journaling or simply telling others what you appreciate about them can lift your spirits as well as those of everyone around you.
This is partially because it is harder to feel as if you lack the things you need in life when you are focused on the abundance you already have. It also holds true because making others feel good makes us feel good.
A lift in mood may be just what you need to relieve yourself of feeling depressed or anxious. You likely will not feel as tempted to go down the rabbit hole of social networking and FOMO when you realize how much you already have. You will begin to feel that you have what you need in life and so do other people. This can be wonderful for your mental and emotional health.
6. Seek Mental Health Professional
Please seek professional help of mental health professional such as licensed clinical psychologist or psychiatrist, if you have are experiencing symptoms of extreme stress, panic attacks, anxiety , inability to sleep, inability to carry out daily activities, or an increase in alcohol or drug use which interferes your daily functioning as a result of Fear of being offline ( FOBO).

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