Voices of Youth: Time for the young to take control of their lives and reduce mobile phone use

As a 15-year-old, I always ask myself: "Who is the real master of your life, you or your phone?"

A survey done by non-profit organisation Common Sense Media in 2016 found that 78 per cent of teenagers check their devices at least once an hour.

Just like other teenagers, I love playing mobile games and enjoy the thrill of them.

Clearly, phone addiction is rife among the younger generation. The temptation to look at our phones while doing something more important is ever-present, and giving in could have a negative impact.

For me, it caused my grades to deteriorate. I was guilty of delaying my revision as I was too engrossed with my phone. This resulted in stressful last-minute cramming.

I feel that the time I spent on social media also made me forget the importance of speaking with my peers and family members.

Eventually, I decided to control my phone use as I realised that it was getting out of hand and affecting my studies and social life. I put away my phone during meal times and when studying. My grades improved dramatically, and I began to understand my family members better.

We, the younger generation, shoulder the responsibility of being the future pillars of society. If we can't even control our phone addiction, then how are we going to lead the world towards positive change?

Even though it might seem like an insurmountable challenge, let us make an effort to take control of our lives.

Gabriel Wee En Xun, 15

Secondary 3