According to Professor Adam Alter that’s how much time the average American will spend staring at their phones. Professor Alter tracks the rise of excessive phone use and its consequences for our health and wellbeing. In his book “Irresistible”, he considers why so many of us are addicted to our screens and other tech driven experience and he offers tentative solutions that suggest balance rather than complete abstinence from screens is the healthiest, most productive way to manage screen time.
Am I right in assuming that if Alter is right, and as a middle aged man who purchased his first smart phone in 2008,which basically means I have consumed screen time for the last 10 or so years, and if I live another 40 years I will have spent 15 of it on the phone? That’s a lot of Facebook, Twitter, news and sport. So, what about my daughter who is eleven, who’s been using a smart phone for the last few years and will probably live another 80+ years, will she consume 30-40 years on her phone? Alter is right, we need to balance out our phone use. But over the next few years, I need to be really attentive to my daughter’s phone use and help her understand 30-40 years glued to a screen is probably way too much time dedicated to a screen when she could be spending part of that time doing all the other things life requires.