We all spend so much time with technology these days. We live in a digital age. Our entire lives can be lived through our phones and computers if we wanted them to be. This access to tech can be so beneficial, but sometimes it can feel like it’s harmful. That’s where digital self care and healthy digital habits come into play.
Today I wanted to talk to you a little about digital self care. Let’s explore what it is, why you need it, and some of the best digital self care habits you can start building right now.
What is digital self care?
Digital self care refers to the practice of taking care of your mental health and emotional wellbeing when using digital technologies, digital tools, and the internet. It involves setting boundaries around the use of digital devices and social media, taking breaks from screens, and using digital tools in a way that promotes mental and emotional health.
Some examples of digital self care might include setting limits on the amount of time spent on social media, using apps to track and manage screen time, taking regular breaks from screens, and using digital tools to practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques.
9 digital self care habits to work on this year
Digital self care should be a priority in our everyday lives. Here are some simple ways you can take steps to create positive habits around digital self care and staying happy and calm while using technology.
1. Turn off your notifications
Turning off notifications can help with digital selfcare in a few ways. First, it can reduce distractions and interruptions. When you receive notifications, it can be tempting to stop what you are doing and respond to them immediately. This can make it difficult to focus on the task at hand and can lead to a feeling of being constantly interrupted. By turning off notifications, you can create blocks of uninterrupted time to focus on the things that are most important to you.
Second, turning off notifications can help reduce the overall amount of time spent on digital devices. Notifications can be a way for apps and websites to keep you engaged and coming back for more. By turning them off, you can limit the amount of time you spend on your device and the number of times you are drawn back to it.
Finally, turning off notifications can help reduce feelings of anxiety and FOMO (fear of missing out). Seeing notifications can create a sense of urgency and pressure to respond, which can contribute to feelings of stress and anxiety. By turning off notifications, you can take control over when and how you engage with digital technologies, rather than feeling like you are constantly reacting to them.
2. Delete apps that make you feel bad
It is generally a good idea to delete apps that make you feel bad because they can have negative effects on your mental and emotional wellbeing. Social media and other apps can sometimes create unrealistic expectations and comparisons, which can lead to negative feelings. In addition, certain apps or websites may contain content that is triggering or distressing for you. We don’t want that!
By deleting apps that make you feel bad, you can create a more positive and healthy online environment for yourself. Make this part of a big digital declutter session or revisit it monthly to check in on which apps you still love and enjoy.
3. Leave groups that you don’t enjoy
Being part of the wrong social media and Facebook groups can affect your digital wellbeing. If you find yourself spending a lot of time in a group that you don’t enjoy, it might be taking time away from other activities or responsibilities that are more important to you.
If you no longer feel a connection to the group or its purpose, it might be best to leave and find groups that are more aligned with your values and interests. By leaving groups that you don’t enjoy, you can free up time and energy for activities that are more meaningful and positive for you.
4. Keep your photos organized
Organizing your digital photos can save you time, help you preserve memories, free up space on your device, and make it easier to share photos with others.
When your photos are organized, it is easier to find the ones you are looking for. This can save you time and frustration when you are trying to access specific photos. Organize your photos, create a timeline of your life, and better remember and reflect on the events and experiences captured in your photos. Make this part of your monthly reset routine to create a habit.
5. Limit your social media time
Social media platforms can be a major distraction and can make it difficult to focus on other tasks. By limiting your social media scrolling time and setting boundaries, you can be more productive and get more done.
Spending too much time on social media can also sometimes lead to negative feelings or low self esteem. By limiting your social media time, you can reduce the potential for these negative effects. Limiting your social media time also means you can be more present and engaged in your interactions with others.
6. Keep your phone somewhere else
Having your phone nearby can be a major distraction, especially if you have notifications turned on. By keeping your phone in another room, you can reduce the temptation to check it and be more focused on the task at hand.
It can be hard to fully relax and unwind when you are constantly connected to your phone. Move it to another it in another room, you can create a more relaxing and peaceful environment for yourself. Use this relaxing space to enjoy a slow morning routine, or plan a self care day.
7. Try a digital detox
A digital detox is a where you intentionally unplug from your digital life for a while — whether it’s a few hours, a day, or even a week. It can involve setting aside specific times or days when you do not use your phone, computer, or other digital devices, or it can involve setting limits on your use of these technologies.
Taking a digital detox can be a great way to reset your habits and create new, healthier ones when it comes to digital technologies. Use your break away from the screen to reconnect with the real world, focus on your wellness and acts of self care, and keep up with the latest news from your loved ones.
8. Use your digital time more intentionally
Sometimes we pick up our devices and get lost in them unintentionally. This means we lose time, disconnect from what’s happening around us, and lose all sense of productivity. Put a stop to this by using your digital time more intentionally and mindfully.
Decide which tasks or activities you want to complete online and schedule specific times for them. This can help you be more intentional and focused when you are using your devices. Set social media use limits, app usage limits, and screen time limits, so you’re not tempted to check in on Instagram or refresh your feed. If you need to chat to someone, make a phone call instead.
9. Avoid taking your phone into the bedroom
Often our mobile phone screens are the last thing we see before we fall asleep at night. Not only is this not great for our health, but it means we’re not focusing on digital self care.
Tell yourself that you’re going to make your bedroom a phone-free zone, at least to start with. Take up reading before you fall asleep or listening to a podcast instead, or use this time to chat with your partner or a loved one about how their day was.
Live better with these digital self care tips
Digital self care isn’t about removing all technology from your life. It’s about living with technology and doing it mindfully, so you can create time, space, and energy to live a self care lifestyle. Use these ideas to help you create a positive relationship with digital technology so you can enjoy the benefits and reduce exposure to the downsides.