Is it time to reexamine your relationship with technology?
For most people, the idea of losing their phone is as stressful to them as the idea of a terrorist attack, according to a new study.
The Physiological Society, a U.K.-based nonprofit, surveyed 2,000 people about how stressful they found certain events (or how stressful they imagined them to be) and found that while fear of a terrorist attack ranked 13th on the list of most stressful events, it came in only half a point ahead of the fear of losing your smartphone, meaning respondents basically found those two events as equally stressful.
A death in the family, imprisonment, and fires/floods damaging your home topped the list as the three most stressful events, but identity theft, wedding planning, being fired from a job, and commute delays all ranked higher than a terrorist attack on the list as well.
You can thank technology for those feelings. "The modern world brings with it stresses we would not have imagined 50 years ago, such as social media and smartphones,” Lucy Donaldson, chair of the Physiological Society’s policy committee, told the Telegraph.
Donaldson and her colleagues also found that women reported higher stress levels than men, and that stress levels increased with age.
Now, does this really mean that most people see losing their phone as being literally as stressful as a terrorist attack? It’s hard to say.
Your chances of being in a terrorist attack are probably a lot lower than the chances of losing your smartphone, so it’s not entirely far-fetched that people are more worried about the immediate effects losing their phone would have on their lives than a terrorist attack would.
It doesn’t mean people wouldn’t find a terrorist attack extremely stressful in reality.
The moral of the story: As with most studies, take the results with a grain of salt. (But also maybe take a moment to reexamine your relationship with your phone.)
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