A couple of years ago, I was attending a Wellness Conference and two speakers really caught my attention. These two women had previously operated a very successful dating agency for many years and decided to change their business focus to support girls aged between 11 and 16 who were addicted to extraordinary mobile phone use.
The addicted girls were caught up in the FoMO Syndrome (Fear of Missing Out) and would spend their night hours in bed sending and receiving hundreds of texts as well as posting endless numbers of Facebook Likes in the constant hope of receiving Likes on their Facebook page. Usually they wouldn’t go to sleep until 4.00am or 5.00am in the morning and then must wake for school at 6.30am to 7.00am. Sleep deprivation became a major problem.
In most cases the parents were totally unaware of what was going on until they were summoned to meet with the School Principal who would report that their daughter was constantly falling asleep in class.
So, what is the dopamine deal? Every text we get, every Like we receive on Facebook gives us a hit of dopamine and we feel good. Hence people who are hooked by the FoMO Syndrome send endless texts in the hope of receiving instant responses so they get constant dopamine hits.Continually counting their Facebook Likes and seeing how fast their Instagram post is moving is another part of the addiction.
Dopamine is a pleasure chemical and classed as one of the ‘happy hormones’ which gets released from the motivational centre located deep in our ancient brain. The chemical stimulates tiny areas of our frontal lobe just above the eyes and it makes us aware of the outside world.
Motivation is also powered by the release of dopamine inside the brain and dopamine plays important roles in arousal, reinforcement and reward and dopamine functions primarily as a local chemical messenger.
I was watching a video interview last night where author and social commentator Simon Sinek was speaking about Stress and Millennials in the Workplace. It’s a great fifteen minute segment and well worth a watch.
This Weeks Video…
Stress and Millennials in the Workplace – Simon Sinek
Simon Sinek says, “We have age restrictions on drugs, alcohol and gambling but no age restrictions on social media and cell phones. These last two are addictive and are causing massive stress in society for millennials.”
He goes on to say… “Millennials are not turning to a person when they are stressed, they are turning to a device, cell phone or social media to help them handle their stress. The outcome is only temporary. People who spend more time on FB suffer from higher rates of depression than those that don’t. “Seeing Everyone Else’s Highlights Reels: How Facebook Usage is Linked to Depressive Symptoms” – Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology 2014”
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