‘We really need to be connecting more to each other’: Tanner Welton

“Did you know that 80 per cent of children check their phone every 5 minutes?” Tanner Welton begins his TEDx Talk, explaining cell phone addiction and the reason behind it.

“It’s called nomophobia, the fear of living without a functioning phone,” Tanner says.

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“Take social media for example. Every single time you post a photo, let’s say in the matter of 10 seconds, you get 4 likes. Well those 4 likes may be small, but it sends a message to your brain that says I want more. So you post another photo. And another photo. Just to see how many likes you get,” he says explaining addiction and validation.

He talks about how it’s not just kids, but adults, too, who indulges in this behavior. “It’s like we live in a virtual world. We’re always thinking about what other people are doing. Even when two people are on a date, they’re on their phones sending photos of the food to people who aren’t even there.”

In the middle of his talk, his phone starts ringing. He smiles and says, “Well this is embarrassing,” before continuing, “This is called phubbing. It’s when you spend more time on your devices than the humans around you.”

He then talks about sleep, and how the blue light affects melatonin. Having your phone next to you can cause eye strain, and even car accidents due to lack of sleep.

“I do think we have reason to worry. Cell phones are responsible for a lot of car accidents. The one thing that I’ve found is that we really need to be connecting more to each other. My advice to you: pay attention to the little things that make you happy.”

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