I Tried A Flip Phone For A Week For My Mental Health

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My common screentime is eight hours and 44 minutes a day. Which means, I spend extra time on my telephone utilizing apps like TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter than I do sleeping (my nightly sleep time is round seven hours.) Technically, I match into the class of being “chronically on-line,” outlined as somebody whose complete existence revolves round being on the web. 

I like to inform myself I’m not the one one on my telephone for greater than I needs to be. So what, precisely, is the perfect period of time to spend in your telephone? The tough half is that there aren’t any stable tips. 

In a single 2018 examine within the Journal of Social and Scientific Psychology, researchers discovered that faculty college students who reduce to not more than half-hour per day on social media had improved well-being in comparison with those that did not, together with decreased signs of melancholy and loneliness.

Generally, consultants advocate that you simply spend at least three to 4 hours day by day with none screentime; lengthy durations of screentime or social media time are related to greater dangers of digital eye pressure, poor sleep, and even nervousness and melancholy. Taking breaks, avoiding screens for an hour earlier than bedtime, and different steps may help.

All I do know is that I’m really ending up with just a little greater than the typical period of time (six to eight hours) that Gen Z spends on-line. Earlier than you ask: Sure, I’ve tried limiting my screentime, which you’ll usually do within the settings of your telephone or social media platforms. The issue is, you possibly can flip any limits off instantly after the notification tells you your restrict has been reached.  

A drawback is that my job revolves round information, so I are usually on-line for work — or a minimum of that’s what I inform myself as I toggle by means of apps like TikTok, Instagram, and Twitter. I must sustain with the information and traits on social platforms. The place else can I discover out that Prince Harry had a frostbitten penis at William and Kate’s wedding ceremony apart from Twitter? 

In actuality, I’ve raging FOMO. What if my pals make plans with out me? What if a Frank Ocean album drops? A new pressure of COVID I ought to pay attention to? The necessity to belong is linked with problematic telephone use, contributing to temper disturbances, social media dependancy, fatigue, stress, and poor psychological well-being, in accordance with a 2022 examine in Human Conduct and Rising Applied sciences. The drive to be socially linked is as basic as meals and intercourse, in accordance with the writer of the examine. 

Contemplating that I’m somebody who writes about well being and has researched the consequences of social media on psychological well being, you’d assume I’d decelerate on media consumption, however since I downloaded Instagram at 13, I by no means have. I needed to see how a phone-free week would have an effect on my psychological well being and if the expertise would encourage me to deactivate extra usually. 

So I made a decision to lock my telephone away for the week. 

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