Smartphones have been a valuable tool for many. It feels like there is an app for everything, banks, stores, insurance, restaurants, workouts, weather, and not to mention social media. You name it and there is an app for it. Of course, being able to ‘add to bag’ and ‘checkout’ in less than two minutes may tick something off our ever-growing to-do list, but does this relieve our stress or does it make it worse?
The average person spends four hours a day on their phone. In a non-stop digital world, the need to be connected 24/7 may be hurting us. Think of how many apps are currently on your phone, of those apps, how many serve you notifications? These notifications, bright red number bubbles, alert us to a certain activity, which in turn floods our brain with cortisol – a stress hormone.
New research is showing that our “smartphones can interfere with our sleep, productivity, mental health, and impulse control. Even having a smartphone within reach can reduce available cognitive capacity (Ridout, Medical Xpress). “
More recently, companies like Apple and Google have set up screen time monitoring within their devices so customers can track their usage, and even set time limits on apps.
So, how can we reduce our Smartphone Stress?
- Turn off some or all notifications – yes, even your email.
- Set up time limits on your phone
- Move your phone out of sight
- Avoid engaging with your phone when you are speaking with someone
- Avoid checking your phone first thing in the morning
-Written by Sarah Teague