How does digital world impact mental health?
We could observe some correlations:
- Mental Health disorders after introduction of smartphones
- Mental Health disorders during pandemic (various factors – working online was one of them)
We can see difficulty to focus, information overburden, high stress level. All of them increase the likelihood of mental health disorder. Not just the social media, but the constant connection to any kind of content is the culprit. All of that has impact on our mental health.
Areas of Mental Health
…most likely to be affected by massive use of online tools
Addiction is when person engages in use of a substance or in a behavior for which the rewarding effects provide a compelling incentive to repeatedly pursue the behavior.
- Intermittent positive reinforcement
- Drive for social approval
It’s not only about social media! Your communicators, e-mails, chains of webpages are developed on the same pattern.
FOMO – „Fear of Missing Out” is experienced in high levels by 17% of Polish population.
They have a lower self-esteem (measured by Rosenberg scale)and 34% of them experience high stress levels (13% of low-FOMO).
Cases of anxiety rose by 26% after pandemic comparing to pre-pandemic levels.
The rule is easy. More time with screens – higher likelihood of depression,
Teens spend three hours a day or more on electronic devices. It means they are 35% more likely to have a risk factor for suicide,
Mechanism: increase in fear of being left out, feeling worse, less meaningful social connections.
Cases of depression rose by 28% after pandemic comparing to pre -pandemic levels.
Digital Minimalism is a concept developed by Cal Newport. It is a philosophy of technology use in which you focus your online time on a small number of carefully selected and optimized activities that strongly support things you value.
Digital Minimalism – Assumptions
Cluttering your time and attention with too many devices, apps, and services is an overall negative cost.
Deciding a particular technology supports something that you value is only the first step.
To truly extract its full potential benefit, it’s necessary to think carefully about how you use the technology.
There is satisfaction in being more intentional about how you engage with new technologies.
Things in life don’t just cost money, they cost us our time (and mental health).
Solely online social connection is like social fast food – does not provide people with the real social satisfaction. Nothing can replace F2F contact.
How to care for our Mental Health in Digital World?
Here are some inspirations on what to do to take care of your mental health in digiral world:
- 30 days – no optional technology (clarity)
- Engage in higher-quality activities
- Use only the technology that serves what you value
- Spend time alone – walks, phone left behind
- Consolidate Texting
- Hold office hours
- Fix or build something every week
- Join a club
- Plan your leasure time – socially
- Use your devices as single-use media
If you want to learn more about this topic, check the full webinar: Mental Health in Digital World
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