New Study Finds Parents' Excessive Mobile Use Affecting Children's Behaviour
The latest news with a dose of wisdom...
By Daniel Schmitz, Mentorship Coach & Associate Partner, Lighthouse International
The world's first study on the impact of parents' mobile phone usage shows a big increase in behavioural problems in children.
More than a third of fathers and mothers admit they are addicted to their mobile phones in some way, not being able to resist checking for new messages, always waiting for incoming calls or just using it too much.
This leads to interruptions in parents' everyday communication with their children during meal time, play time or face-to-face communication. Researchers are calling this "technoference".
Parents struggle to simultaneously put attention on their phones and to be there for their children. This leads to a range of behavioural problems in children form sulking, whining and displaying feelings of hyperactivity, temper tantrums and becoming easily frustrated.
Another study based on parents' mobile phone usage in fast food restaurants observed the following:
“Time and again we saw less conversation during parents’ tech use. They took longer to respond to their children and there was more conflict with the parents raising their voice, shoving children away and the children trying to escalate their behaviour.”
According to Health chiefs, this excessive mobile phone usage threatens children's speech and language development:
“The attempt to communicate goes unrewarded and the child could, in time, learn that there’s no point in talking. For little children, it is these multiple interactions with an adult through which it learns language and how to speak.”
One of the key traits of legendary parents is they are able to keep their attention where it needs to be, successful parents are able to have the discipline to put their attention where it needs to be and even if they do get distracted by technology they are able to bring themselves back. If you would like to discover more about successful parenting and developing more discipline, feel free to get in touch with one of our family mentorship coaches for some advice.
Here is more about this story and a few questions to consider:
- Do you sometimes feel like you waste time on your phone and could spend that time more meaningfully?
- Do you sometimes feel you spend less quality time with your family and friends because you are on your phone too much?
- How often do you think you check your phone during the day (0-10, 10-50, more than 50 times)?
- Do you sometimes wonder if using a phone has a positive or negative impact on your life?
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