By Gillian Ramirez, Alliance Intern from UC San Diego
Do you find yourself spending too much time watching cute pet videos, finding quick recipes, viewing the latest social injustice and/or looking at something a friend sent you? Don’t get me wrong — they can bring joy. However, excess time on our phones can harm our mental well-being. Given the rise of at-home jobs since the pandemic, our eyes are glued to technology more than ever. Our digital usage is a Catch-22 — we go to our devices to escape reality and further ourselves from stressors, only to find ourselves bombarded and addicted.
Many of us can attest to a cramped hand, strained eyes, and tight neck among other physical symptoms of prolonged phone use. The Conversation gives 7 effective ways to regain control:
- Consciously put devices down and away — out of sight, out of mind is key here, especially for those of us who use our phones as alarms
- Turn off notifications and alarms when you want to have full attention on your task — having your phone nearby, even while not ringing, can impact your attention capabilities
- Designate time away from all technology — going outside, reading a book, anything to peel us away from our screens
- Make screen easier on the eyes — avoid squinting, reduce blue light, and be conscious of volume levels
- Organize devices to reduce overload of information — lifestyle and time tracking apps are two examples of how technology can be advantageous
- Sit properly when typing or scrolling away — avoid slouching which will damage your neck and back
- Set limits on screen time
Applying these tips will also make us more grateful for the abilities of technology, allowing us to appreciate it in all of its glory without falling into its endless pit of consumption.