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Tame Your Gadgets Before They Take Over Your Life

Tame Your Gadgets Before They Take Over Your Life

Photo courtesy of Creative Commons

Dr. Sherrie Bourg Carter | Excelle

May 29, 2009

Electronic communication! What did we ever do without it? Well, if you consider the research, the answer is a lot more than we’re doing now!

Much like Pavlov’s dog (a classic psychological experiment) who was taught to salivate at the mere ringing of a bell, every time we humans hear a ding, beep, swoosh, vibration, or whatever obnoxious tone we decide to program into our electronic devices these days, we jump! But unlike Pavlov’s dog, we’re not helpless animals at the mercy of a researcher. We’re actively and eagerly participating in our own classical conditioning! And if you believe the research, it’s wreaking havoc on our already overscheduled and overburdened lives.

Who these days doesn’t use a cell phone, text messaging, a personal computer, email, and instant messaging (to name only a few of the multitude of devices we can choose from to electronically communicate with anyone, anywhere, anytime)? And who hasn’t programmed these devices to alert us in some way, shape, or form the millisecond someone decides to reach out and touch? Can you say no one?

Let’s face it! We’ve become addicted to instant gratification, and a big part of that gratification is being able to reach just about anyone at just about any time, any place, anywhere. What’s so bad about that, you might ask? Well, let’s see.

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