- – Digital wellness is the pursuit of intentional and mindful usage of technology by promoting healthy use habits to avoid negative effects
- – It’s more relevant than ever right now, given how much we rely on our devices: people now check their phones at max of 300 times a day, and social media has now been found to be more addictive than smoking!
- – An additional effect of using these devices is the radiation they emit – which act as a stressor, impact the quality and amount of sleep we get, and increases the likelihood of us experiencing oxidative stress
You’ve probably heard of mental health or physical wellness, but how about digital wellness? We now live in a time where we move from screen to screen. Think about it – the first thing you probably do in the morning is to check your phone; then onto your laptop for school or work and maybe watch TV to wind down. On average, we now spend more than 3.5 hours on our phones alone every day. It’s completely understandable – we reap such a diverse range of benefits from these devices, but it’s equally important to recognize the importance of having a healthy relationship with them. So as we continue to live in this technology-driven world, we should also practice digital wellness to prevent burnout and other negative consequences down the road.
Digital Wellness is becoming increasingly important as technology continues to pose a plethora of harmful risks and diseases. There was a direct link found between the use of social media and mood disorders such as anxiety and depression. Other impacts of this technology exposure include a diminishing attention span, stunted imagination & creativity, and the failure to connect in person with those around you. Lastly, a major yet understated consequence is the effects of EMFs (Electro-Magnetic Fields), which are essentially the harmful radiation produced by technology. These EMFs have the potential to play with our biological systems, cause oxidative stress and affect our day-to-day functioning – something we may not fully recognize the importance of right now.
But what is digital wellness? Essentially, it’s the pursuit of being intentional and mindful with our usage of technology. It promotes healthy use habits and helps you take control of your time and attention – two capacities we often take for granted. There are several ways that you can start practicing digital wellness today:
- Reduce your screentime – start by monitoring it and try reducing it close to bedtime, when your first wake up and when you eat
- Maintaining a distance from your devices – your devices emit a host of EMFs, so this distance can help minimize the radiation
- Practicing mindfulness – be more intentional with what you give your attention and time to; this can help you stop reaching for your devices for mindless entertainment
- Prioritize in-person interactions- even though the technology is meant to help us connect with others more, it can make us feel more isolated because of limited human interaction
- Turn off or reduce notifications – this can help minimize the distractions and allow you to control your tech instead of vice versa
- Be focused while working – try focusing on one thing when you’re using a device, which can help you stay in flow and be most productive and avoid prolonged use.