So… You think you might have a problem? Well, first things first. What digital technology devices are you using?
- Celular phones
- Digital cable or video platforms
- Gaming consoles
We all use every day a certain combination of these devices. If you don’t know what gadgets are, think about the iWatch, digital cameras, or even lighting and security systems. Little by little, we increase the use of technology and stop paying attention at how attached we are to it. Even in the most simple activities.
Technology has led to different addictions little by little. The first generation who started interacting with digital technology, barely noticed its impact, since it was mostly work or school-related. Then, all of a sudden, kids are using tablets before their first birthday. The same way older people now embrace the use of digital technology stay connected with family and friends, and even to keep track of their medicines.
All of this also proves that technology has been developed to serve our every need. Nowadays we can’t even imagine leaving home without our phones. However, as it always happens, digital technology also brings along certain negative things. We cannot suggest that the idea is to abandon everything and run into the wilderness to stay away from the digital impact; but we do want to help you find balance within your digital, and regular life.
So, here is the test. For the next 21 days, you’ll log all the time you interact with digital devices. This is usually called screen time or digital exposure, let’s say it’s your Digital/Screen time (DST). You can log your own and keep track of someone else’s.
As a reference, here’s a table that gathers what other specialists and researchers have developed worldwide.
These parameters are usually set for under-age users. However, for users 13 and over, things get more complicated, as schools and jobs require more engagement. That’s why, even though we give a rough estimate of less than 50 hours per week, that might not be achievable. A better reference would be to think about how much time you can stay away from engaging with digital technology, while still having a good professional and social interaction. Something we call Non-Digital time (NDT).
Such NDT is a more achievable parameter to limit our screen time and digital engagement. This happens because once we are immersed in an activad Digital Life, it is easier to notice how much time we do not use digital technology, rather than measuring our use. The NDT includes all the time we have no exposure or interaction. This means that if we are working all day and decide to take a break to watch TV, that would not be NDT. The exposure to screens and interaction with digital platforms takes it out of the count.
Do you use Fitbit or iWatch? Well, all the time you wear it you are fully immersed in Digital exposure. You doubt it? Well… it has a lithium battery, Bluetooth, and it can synch totally wireless.
Now that you have enough information, go ahead and test yourself. Use The Digital Control Sheet to keep track of your times. Just download and print it to get started.
Log your times, and check your DST. Are you above your recommended time? It might be time to detox yourself from digital technology. You may still plan on that Netflix binge marathon, use your Xbox, and stay active in your social media. But if you do not start finding balance, you’ll notice it in your patience, mood, and finally your health.
Keep en eye on our content, and we’ll give you options to start your digital detox and increase your NDT. The most important thing is to remember that there are plenty of activities that do not require digital technology use. Your mind and body surely need it.
Do you know someone who could benefit from this article or test? Please share!