The presence of technology has increased in today’s society more than ever before. Every second a person is online checking their email, newsfeed, or recent Facebook posts. In a population that is constantly online many people are finding it harder to complete one task at a time. With the option to open up multiple browser windows or click from one screen to the next it can be hard to find focus.
In this 21st-century society, not being able to type without looking is seen as a disadvantage. The growing total of digital distractions, like email, social media, etc., have the ability to make it strenuous to put a focus on just one task. Today, people are going towards technology in oppose of getting their work completed because it is seen as an escape that leaves the user feeling more relaxed (Hardy). These electronic devices have changed the way of our thinking due to the amount of time spent staring at screens. For example, “Younger kids- even toddlers- are spending more and more time with digital technology” (Rosin). Kids are starting to develop issues focusing on one thing at a time. If this continues, we could be faced with a society that has a minimal attention span. It can be found daunting to stay on task when given the opportunity to multitask. It is hard not to play that new level of candy crush when faced with the assignment to write a lab report. Multi-tasking is not something new, but is exponentially increasing in society with the help of computers.
Staring at screens can not only make a person lose their focus, but also can contribute to the way we think. “We increasingly are overwhelmed with distractions flying at us from various connected devices” (Treseder).With the amount of notifications that pop up on our screen or the five alarms we set to wake us up in the morning, our minds are never left alone. Losing the ability to focus can make turn a 15 minute homework into a 45 minute struggle. This experience can be detrimental to one’s health. According to CNN a article written by Jacqueline Howard’s, adults are spending 10 hours and 33 minutes a day staring at a screen. This mass amount of time is being spent in a virtual world that has the ability to steer our focus in different directions. A study reported by the New York Times written by Mitt Richet said that boys from 12 to 14 spent and hour each day after school playing video games and then after could not focus on memorizing vocabulary words. Losing the ability to focus at such a young age can be hard to regain when growing up in such a screen driven society.
Although technology is used in our daily lives to help reduce stress and make life easier it can be seen as a major obstacle. On average people are spending more time look at screen than at faces (Summers). Technology screens and blue light are almost viewed as addictive cases. Focusing on tasks and things outside the technological world can be frustrating to overcome when one is so engaged with their device. With people in such a trance with technology it could be hard to focus on social aspects an article from the New York Times said” …if a child’s laying on his or her bed and texting friends instead of getting together and saying, ‘Hey, what’s up,’ that there’s a problem there…”. Children growing up that have trouble focusing now, can have an even harder time in the future. A solution to this trending problem could be limiting the amount of screen time that being brought upon us as a society. Another solution could be to take breaks from screens every once in awhile to let your eyes rest and to refocus your mind on other things.
Due to the mass amount of technology use in society people are finding it increasingly more difficult to communicate and focus on one thing. The ability to focus and complete a task in a timely manner is a concept a person can be familiarized with since grade school. The increase in digital devices have made it harder for humans today to focus and carry out a certain task. Possible solutions for this problem are to reduce the uses of devices such as, computers, phones, tvs, etc, and create a more focused and less screen driven society.
“Growing Up Digital, Wired for Distraction.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 21
Hardy, Ian. “Losing focus: Why tech is getting in the way of work.” BBC News, BBC, 8 May
Howard, Jacqueline. “Americans at more than 10 hours a day on screens.” CNN, Cable News
Network, 29 July 2016, www.cnn.com/2016/06/30/health/americans-screen-time-nielsen/index.html.
Rosin, Hanna. “The Touch-Screen Generation.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 19 Feb.
Summers, Juana. “Kids And Screen Time: What Does The Research Say?” NPR, NPR, 28 Aug. 2014,
Treseder, William. “The Two Things Killing Your Ability to Focus.” Harvard Business Review,
27 Sept. 2017,hbr.org/2016/08/the-two-things-killing-your-ability-to-focusTags: distractions focus Okemos High School technology Youthvoices
Technology and the Loss of Focus by Gigi is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.