We’re all familiar with the idea of being a little too attached to our phones. Now a recent study reports that people who associate their devices with positive personal memories are more likely to view their phone as an actual extension of themselves. (Can you say yikes?)
Highlighted by Science of Us, the study out of South Korea analyzed the responses of 301 college students who were asked to describe their relationship with their phone, why they felt attached to it and how they felt when they were separated from their device. Researchers found that participants who associated their phones with positive memories (for example, the countless pictures, videos and texts stored on them) or important information (like loved ones phone numbers) were more likely to view the device as a direct extension of themselves.
On a slightly less surprising note, the study also found that people who experienced anxiety or distress when separated from their phone, also known as nomophobia, were more likely to be distracted by their phone when trying to study or work than the other participants.
It’s undoubtedly nice to have a collection of our favorite photos and videos at our fingertips (not to mention contact information for everyone we hold dear), but the fact that some people actually consider their phones to be an extension of themselves adds yet another unsettling layer to our society’s addiction to technology. This seems like a good opportunity for a reminder to unplug, recharge and step away from the smartphones.
Read more about the study on Science of Us.