It can sometimes be difficult to focus on the things that matter most to us when technology plays an increasingly integral role in our everyday lives. Life should be improved, not disrupted by technology.
If humans interact with technology, the experience should contribute to mental and physical wellbeing. The objective of improving digital wellbeing is to design technology in such a way as to encourage healthy usage and proactively assist users in maintaining healthy lifestyles.
Companies developed less disruptive features or added the option to turn off distracting notifications in response to the demand for apps and technology that respected a person’s time. Additionally, companies developed new apps to track digital wellbeing, maintaining records such as the amount of screen time spent on each app. In addition, they assist the user in reducing unwanted screen time or being more deliberate about how technology is used.
Digital Wellbeing Considerations
Multiple factors related to health can be taken into account when optimizing digital health. Among these are:
• Setting a maximum amount of screen time per day or per week
Infrequent users of devices can reduce their eye strain. Eye strain can be relieved by-products such as dark panels for screens or special lenses for glasses to reduce glare. In addition to how large the screen information should be, what settings and resolution should be used, how often the eyes need to rest, and how far away the screen should be from the eyes, there are recommendations.
• Mental health impacts are unforeseen
Social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram have implemented the endless scroll feature, a factor that adversely affects mental health. There has been a correlation found between internet addiction and anxiety, ADHD, depression, impulsivity, and poor time management.
• A greater focus on nutrition and physical activity
Various technological devices have been developed to assist device users in increasing fitness levels, tracking heart rates, reporting step counts, and tracking diets.
• Helping users who use devices at night get a good night’s rest
By switching to grayscale or changing the screen contrast, users can lessen the strain on their eyes before going to sleep. iPhone users, for example, can set a time when they’re supposed to go to sleep.
Reducing the Negative Effects of Technology
We need to understand how technology may have negative effects on our lives, and then work to manage it healthily. This section discusses some resources that we and our students can use to help us and them.
• Keeping an eye on usage
Getting a sense of how much time we are already spending on technology would be a good first step towards digital wellbeing. Social media, YouTube, Reddit, email, and other online activities can be hard to estimate. These statistics can now be seen in many apps, which is great. In addition, to set usage limits, some of these apps let you go a step further.
Manage our device’s notifications is another way to promote digital wellbeing. Keeping up to date with what’s going on around us, and staying in touch with those we care about, is blissful, but there may be times when temporarily turning off or at least limiting notifications to only the most crucial notifications is a better approach.
Surely, this can be challenging as we struggle against FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out). We have this feeling of having to be connected constantly, otherwise, we will miss something important. Our goal is to experience some JOMO (the Joy of Missing Out), where we can disconnect from our technology occasionally and enjoy the individuals, the world, and our experiences.
• Online Training
It is possible to find a healthy balance between technology and your life by using several tools online to help you and your students gain more knowledge about digital wellbeing.
The Best Ways to Achieve Digital Wellbeing
1. Examine your digital habits
New habits can seem daunting, but taking small steps and adjusting your digital behavior will lead to a happy and more present lifestyle. How do you feel when you use your digital devices? Social media and messages may sometimes overwhelm you, cause you to feel pressured or stressed. Do you ever feel this way? When you go out, do you get anxious if you forget your phone? You should consider how you can improve your digital wellbeing if your digital device is causing you negative feelings.
2. Keep an eye on your digital activities
To improve your digital wellbeing, you need to understand how you use your tech. Understanding how you use digital devices and how you interact with them is extremely important. You can now analyze the time you spend using each app and digital device with most smartphones.
3. Define your boundaries
Digital devices surround us. Our world is filled with technology! We fail to set healthy boundaries when it comes to technology. Apps and websites allow you to set daily limits. The apps and sites will pause once you reach the limit, and notifications will be silenced.
4. Time limit for going to bed
To help you sleep better, turn off your phone and other electronic devices. Several apps provide nighttime mode, silent notifications, and grayscale screens, which reduce blue light. Our sleep-wake cycle is disrupted when we expose ourselves to artificial blue light at night as it blocks the hormone melatonin.
5. Mealtime without gadgets
In the past, families, and friends sat down to eat dinner with their families and loved ones as a time to relax, catch up and discuss their days at school or work. The research shows that most families are now eating silently, using mobile phones or electronic gadgets during the meal without communicating with each other.
App notifications can easily cause you to be distracted! You can temporarily pause apps on some mobile phones. As a result, you will not be distracted from important tasks when your phone rings. You will be reminded that an application is paused when you attempt to open it while in focus mode!
7. Social media
In today’s society, social media plays a big part in how we communicate and converse with other people, which can be both positive and negative. It provides a lot of useful information as well. It has been shown that overuse of social media (social media addiction) and continually communicating electronically, rather than face-to-face, can cause depression, loneliness, and social isolation.
As a result of being surrounded by social media, we often experience negative feedback, such as feeling inadequate about how we look and live.
As with any good thing, technology has the potential to improve our lives, but like anything, we need to maintain a healthy level of balance. You should be able to evaluate and manage your use of technology by using these tools, settings, and resources so that it contributes to overall wellbeing.