Do you suffer from Online syndrome?

The writer, Asgar Jafferali Dhanji (Dar es Salaam, Tanzania) served as the Secretary-General of the Africa Federation for two – 3-years terms.  He served as JIBA Vice Chairman – with a particular passion to raise funds and offer Micro Finance to our Community – for low-income, underprivileged, startups, Business loans, to individuals, and small enterprises — thereby giving opportunities to grow economically.  He is the founder of Imaan Finance Ltd — the First Islamic Finance Institution in Tanzania.  and has also served in Dar ss Salaam Jamaat’s Arbitration Committee as well as a Board member of Ebrahim Haji Charitable Hospital – with a particular passion for the project of building the new hospital.  He is now a motivational/Inspirational speaker giving regular Saturday Fajr lectures at Dar Imambara.



ow many hours a day do you spend online catching up on Facebook, view photos on Instagram, talking on WhatsApp or surfing websites?

Too much Online can cause mental illness, depression, loneliness, poor social skills, low esteem, lack of physical exercise and losing touch with reality.

But how do you come ‘offline’ when so much of our daily lives is moving ‘online’?

True, every month new sites and online services are launched. If you need a school for your kids, medical treatment, tourist destination, or recipe – you go online. Bill Gates put it so well when he called the Internet the ‘town square for the global village of tomorrow’.

The onus is on ourselves and how we balance being online and offline. Below is some guidance that may help:

1. When you invite friends /family to your home insist that everyone leaves their phones in their pockets or handbag. Enjoy their company – that is why you invited them! 

2. Call your loved ones or relations/friends on the phone rather than speaking via Facebook or WhatsApp. Your voice gives comfort, confidence and conveys a personal touch. 

3. Write someone a letter or a card. Your handwriting is very personal and conveys emotions and warmth. 

4. Take a few hours’ breaks periodically, daily from social media especially from WhatsApp messages or Google searches. Rediscover the joys that come from leafing through books and magazines. 

5. When on the road or in other places, enjoy the view or environment not the screen every time you hear a beep. 

6. When taking photos, there is no need to post immediately, enjoy your surroundings/people without the urge to tell the world. 

7. Why on earth do you have the urge to tell the world on Facebook or social media what you eat, what you do, where you go, and a lot more! Is it not your own personal business? Do you think the ‘likes’ you get are of any worth to you, really? In fact, you are destroying your privacy. 

“Turn off your email, turn off your phone, disconnect from the Internet; figure out a way to set limits daily so you can concentrate when you need to and disengage when you need to. 

“Remember technology is a good servant but a bad master”– Gretchen Rubin. 

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