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Question of the Day: Are You Addicted to Your Smartphone?

Psychologists are concerned people are obsessed with their Smartphones. Are you?

More than a third of the American people own a Smartphone, according to a recent Pew study about Smartphone adoption and usage.

And of the people who own one, 25 percent of them are using the Smartphone as their primary means of going online. By taking photos, streaming music, providing email and phone services, these all-in-one devices fulfill the role of what four or five separate devices used to do.

The Smartphone's utility may be leading Americans to an increasing dependence on the devices—some psychologists are saying obsession, according to a story published yesterday on The Huffington Post.

Writer Ellen Gibson interviewed Lisa Merlo, director of psychotherapy training at the University of Florida.

"Watching people who get their first smartphone, there's a very quick progression from having a basic phone you don't talk about to people who love their iPhone, name their phone and buy their phones outfits," said Lisa Merlo, director of psychotherapy training at the University of Florida.

And, according to the Pew Research Center, "the feeling of missing out on something causes some people to even sleep next to their phones. Of the 35 percent of Americans who own them, two-thirds sleep with their phone next to their heads."

Where is your phone right now? Are you reading this story on your phone? If you're on a computer, is your phone close by?

Here's our Question for Today:

Are you addicted to your Smartphone? Do you feel the need to unplug? What are strategies you have for keeping your Smartphone use in check—or do you feel that's not necessary? 

Heather Flournoy July 27, 2011 at 09:25 PM
That depends on who you ask! One friend calls it my second liver. But honestly, I teach social media and manage clients for Really Social Strategies, so need to be in communication on a consistent basis. But otherwise, I take regular breaks. I have my phone nearby during business hours if I'm away from my home office. But more and more, I'm purposely turning it off for certain periods of time like during dinner, before 8 am, when focusing on a project, and when visiting with friends. For a long time it was just there as part of my regular life... until I realized how insidiously it had invaded my social life. If you know me from KatonahGreen, then you know I'm about real, meaningful interactions with people, and sometimes these 'smart' phones have a negative impact.
Matt July 28, 2011 at 12:37 AM
Not at all -Sent from my iPhone

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