6 Digital Wellness Tips
Technology, man. It’s a beautiful blessing and neverending curse that continues to grow with every coming day. It’s inescapable. Everything piece of info we have the slightest interest in is readily at our fingertips, which is great! Content is pouring in, research is expanding—people are hungrier than ever to learn.
On the downside, we have 24/7 access to social media, the news, emails, etc. We feel an obligation to be ON all the time. Plus, we’re constantly sizing ourselves up to what we come across online, which can take a massive blow on our confidence.
While tech isn’t going anywhere any time soon, there are some ways to take some control back on the side effects it can have on your mental health. Here are 6 of our favorites for 2020.
Our brains are designed to react to notifications. This constant stream of interruption is not only distracting, but it can also be flagged as a stress factor in our brains. As a result, our sweat glands are triggered, our heartbeat quickens and our muscles tighten, to name a few reactions. A quick fix to reduce these fluctuating levels of stress throughout the day is to turn off notifications. Between social media, email, texts and other app push-notifications, we can unknowingly get distracted or interrupted hundreds of times each day. Not only does this make accomplishing tasks more difficult, but it also causes our brains to endure unnecessary stress over the course of the day.
Do yourself a favor and purge your following list on Instagram every month or so. Over the years we collect a string of random, spur-of-the-moment follow accounts, some that could potentially be causing unwanted negativity. Maybe you followed a bunch of swimwear models during your brief weight-loss kick but now they make you feel bad about having a piece of pizza. Or maybe you loved this one influencer’s wanderlust photos but now they’re a gentle reminder that you don’t take enough vacation time. If an account is making you feel anything outside of positivity, unfollow it. Pro tip: replace every unfollow with an account that promotes self-love, like motivational quotes or meditation tips.
Pick one hour of each day to ditch your phone. Whether it’s right when you wake up, the hour before you go to bed, or somewhere in the middle of the day when productivity basically hits zero, try to keep that hour consistent until it becomes part of your routine to go phoneless for that hour. Who knows, you might come to crave the silence you get during those 60 minutes (or appreciate the productivity increase). Can’t do it? Try limiting your app time with your iPhone’s screen-time tracker.
There are some apps we open up so frequently that it can become second nature to open them at any moment’s notice (cough, Instagram). We’ve memorized where they are on our home screens and how to start aimlessly scrolling in a matter of seconds. Try moving these apps around on your phone—whether it’s to a second screen or in a folder, keep your brain guessing about where these distracting apps are hidden. Those few extra seconds of brain work might force you to rethink if you really need to open up Instagram yet again.
It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the fake world you have on your phone. To stay present and appreciate everything happening in the now, remind yourself to give gratitude where gratitude is due. There are SO many great ways to do this. Find a friend to hold you accountable, text them three things you’re grateful for every morning. Or try the Prezence pauses that notify you when to take a moment to check in with yourself and reflect on what is going well in your life.
For digital wellness, you need to be able to have frank conversations with yourself about your mental stability and face the sometimes uncomfy realities about what is hindering you from reaching a healthier relationship with technology. The Use Technology Mindfully section of Prezence is designed to put you in a better headspace about bad habits and anxiety that has brewing in our minds around phone usage, social channels, notifications and other stress-triggering factors.
Your phone is usually in your hand, in your pocket, on your desk or at your bedside table. It’s important to create healthier habits with this little (but powerful) piece of technology to keep your days productive and your self-love levels high.