Gone are the days when the word ‘addict’ paints a picture of a dirty homeless man sitting on the street corner with a syringe sticking off his hand. Times have changed, there is a new kid on the block and it is here to stay. Yes, my friends, Internet Addiction is a real thing.
Questions that may come to your mind are how much time is flagged as addiction. Is it a serious life-threatening problem? The thing is there aren’t any sure shot benchmarks to taint and paint you as an addict but you can consider yourself a potential if you tick these 7 signs:
1. Good Mornings with Social Media.
When Social Media feeds are what you want to wake up to every morning when you want to sneak in those couple of likes and comments before getting ready for college, when your ride from home to college is all about checking out Instagram stories, you know you have been bitten by the Internet bug.
2. It’s Never Enough!
No amount of surfing on the internet can satiate your hunger for more. It’s like ketchup for your fries, mozzarella to your pizza, NEVER ENOUGH! Unless your Mom does this:
3. Memes make your day!
If lately the only thing that gets a laugh out of you are Internet memes or your mood for the day is based completely upon what you see on the net, then you, my friend are an addict. You may find yourself tagging your friends with names starting with S, stating that they could be a potential criminal. Or sheepishly tagging a buddy whose name starts with ‘A’, cos the meme says a pizza treat is due!
4. Time Lapse
When you realize you spend more time on surfing the Internet than intended, consider it a symptom. How many of you swear to watch only 2 episodes of Narcos on Netflix, but somehow the sun rises early or you never sleep. If you have read so far into this article, I am sure you are one of the tribe.
5. It’s Complicated!
You have a pull and push relationship with the Internet. While it makes you all euphoric and happy at one time, it makes you sad and guilty at the other times. But you are caught in this ‘It’s complicated’ phase.
6. You live in your Virtual World!
You prefer to live an Online Identity. You love your friends on Social Media. However, face difficulties or complete ignorance towards the people around you. You can post a plethora of feelings for someone on the web, but refrain from calling your friends on their birthday. Your relationship goes from that love emoticons on all photos to blocking on all social media platforms. You love this little virtual, online word of yours and don’t like anyone trying to get into your bubble.
7. Hashtags…Hashtags n more…#
#instalife #instagood #sleepoverwithgals #girlgang….. Your pyjama parties are more like posting selfies with hashtags and replying to the comments rather than real talking! Going out for lunch, #foodisbae #bistro. Going out for a party #nightlife #partywithpals.. Your life is about updating your social feed with what you do round the clock rather than ditching the phone and living the moment.
If you’ve silently nodded yes…yes that’s me after reading each point or cried in your head - ‘Oh my god, I do need the wi-fi like drugs, maybe?’ or a ‘thank god for online friends…’ You are an Internet Addict. This may sound funny but yeah, it can cause serious problems to your health, mind, and career. Start with limiting your time on the internet and engage in more physical activities and feel the difference. It’s time you realize that excess of anything is bad! So just go out with your friends, take up some classes of music and dance, invest your time into productivity and reaffirm your Offline identity!