People are quirky–there are no two ways about that! Some people
can’t get into their day until they’ve had a cup of coffee. Some people
panic if they have to give a public speech. Some people, on the other
hand, suffer anxiety at the thought of being without their cell phone! If
you break out in a cold sweat if your phone is left uncharged, you might just
be a nomophobe
Are you a nomophobe?
If you can’t handle physically being away from your phone, or experience anxiety when you run out of minutes or data on your service plan, run out of battery juice, or lack reception, then you’ve got a case of nomophobia. Nomophobia can be marked by one or all of the following indications:
Fear of Losing Your Cell Phone
The Huffington Post reported that being without a cell phone is a genuine anxiety for about 67% of cell phone users (huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/23/nomophobia-fear-of-being-without-a-mobile-phone-on-the-rise_n_1375979.html) and, according to Pew Charitable Trust, “29% of cell owners describe their cell phone as “something they can’t imagine living without” (pewinternet.org/Commentary/2012/February/Pew-Internet-Mobile.aspx). Suffering from nomophobia is fraught with anxiety and even sheer panic when one misplaces one’s cell phone or the phone loses its charge of ability to function properly. You may have some degree of nomophobia if you check your cell phone repeatedly for updates (more than three or four times an hour could be considered excessive) or even avoid visiting areas that have no cell phone reception.
Is Your Phone a Crutch?
While people may baby their cell phones because they’re simply expensive and useful devices, others are far more personally invested in their connection to their phones. Their phones, if not in hand, are at least in a pocket of purse. Some may take their phones to their bedrooms or even the bathroom! Having nomophobia means always having a charged battery and the devices required to maintain that charge. Some may even have their back-up cell phone at the ready! If you experience any of these indicators, you might have a touch of nomophobia too!
Roots of Nomophobia
Some people have called the cell phone the electronic leash. While some people can’t wait to duck away from the network, turn off the ringer, and even ditch the grid, others thrive on the constant connection their cell phone affords. Moreover, in an invariably more disconnected world where everything from shopping to working can be performed online, it’s probably not so surprising that some people are buddying up to their phones for continuous company! Even at our company, we think we might know–and love–a few nomophobes!
Is There a Cure?
While some schools of thought encourage people suffering from phobias to face their fears, we–that is–some of our constituents can’t imagine making it through a single day or even an hour without our mobile phones. A day without notifications, ringtones, apps, Fruit Ninja…well, I fear some of us might prefer a bout of the flu. Some people have encouraged their nomophobic friends and colleagues to approach their problem with baby steps. For instance, they might ban their cell phones at the dinner table or while in the car. If you find yourself using your cell phone on dates or when your family is in the same room trying to talk to you and lamenting your lack of eye contact, it might just be time to refrain from using your cell phone just a little bit or, perhaps, you might even check to see if there’s an app for that.
We recommend taking a gamble and terrifying 53% of them just by stashing their cell phones in a place where they’ll never find them. It’ll be an epic Halloween prank and cause way more fear than that grim reaper costume you wear every year. Just be willing to lose a few friends. But hey, it’s all in good fun. Happy Halloween from Quikteks!