If there’s one thing that can’t be denied it’s the fact that the pandemic has increased our screentime manifold. When there was a major pause in face-to-face interaction, it was when the internet and technology played the game to connect people on screen.
While many got the liberty to work from home, it came with its fair share of challenges – increased screentime. It not only took a toll on our health but also on our minds.
Obesity, sleep problems, chronic neck and back problems, depression, anxiety, and reduced concentration, all came as a part and parcel of the prolonged exposure to screens. Not only this but issues like loss of cognitive ability, impaired socializing skills, and weakened emotional judgment, added to people’s woes.
All this calls for immediate attention and to avoid all these, one can take up simple steps to control and reduce screen time for better health of the body and mind.
Install a focus app:
These days, some focus apps are available on Android and IOS software. These apps have the focus feature where you can set up your maximum screen time limit. As you cross the set limit, the app will restrict your phone from opening or will restrict the functions of other apps. Another feature that one can find here is setting a focus time where one can set a few minutes or hours to focus and stay away from your screen. For an instance, say, you are sitting to study. You can set the focus time as 1 hour. During the next one hour, all the apps of your device will be locked. This helps in driving away distractions and wastage of time.
By now everyone knows what binge-watching is, if you still don’t, binge-watching is spending excessive time watching movies, shows, and series. This is a very unhealthy habit. People often indulge in binge-watching late at night which hampers sleep. So, one should reduce binge-watching. Find fruitful, yet entertaining alternatives to screen like playing a musical instrument, going out for a walk, getting involved in a self-care routine, or reading a book. These ideas can help you in reducing your screen time and lead a happy and healthy life.
Set limits for yourself:
Set your screen limits and fix your screen hours. Promise yourself not to use screens at night. You can also set up screen slots for yourself. For example, using the screen for 30 minutes in the morning, 2 hours in the afternoon, and so on. As mentioned above, you can use a focus app to control your screen time. Challenge yourself not to get overexposure to the screen in a day. You can also reward yourself with small perks for completing the goals and staying within the limits.
Don’t eat in front of screens:
Avoid consuming meals in front of your TV or mobile phone. This will lead to a prolonged screen time and you won’t be able to avoid screen. This will soon turn into a habit and then addiction. Sit with your family or loved ones during your meals. Spend quality time with people around you. Eating with a show or movie develops the habit of slow eating and hence, longer screen time. Also, if you take your meal watching your screen, you might try to avoid walking after the screen. This is because the body will get used to a comfortable position with entertainment. So, avoid screen during a meal.
Do not install a TV in your bedroom:
The bedroom is the place where we spend most of our time when we are at home. Closing the day, we also go to sleep in our bedroom. In such a scenario, if there is a TV in your bedroom, you may develop the urge to watch Television which will cause a delay in sleeping. The body gets into a comfortable position while in bed, so, watching TV in such a position will definitely lead to prolonged screen exposure. If the TV is installed in a hall, it will restrict you from watching TV during your bedtime. Therefore, avoid installing a television in your bedroom. You can also make your bedroom a tech-free zone where it is compulsory for everyone to keep their devices away.
Remove unnecessary apps:
This can be a very significant step toward reducing your screen time. Uninstall or disable unnecessary apps from your mobile phone. Remove those apps that consume a lot of time, but are useless and unproductive. You can remove addictive games from your mobile and also a few social media apps that waste a lot of time during your day. This will reduce your willingness to pick up your mobile time and again.
These tips and tricks can prove to be very efficient in reducing screen time and protecting the eyes. It’s better to reduce your screen time before the time runs out and the effects become irreversible. Start reducing your screen time by taking small steps that will ultimately contribute to the bigger journey.