Interacting with technology on the reg is pretty much a necessity in 2018—whether it’s to keep up with your friends on social media, to stay up-to-date on current events, or because your job requires you to use a computer all day. In other words, you’re practically surgically attached to a device 24/7.
Despite well-meaning wellness experts’ recommendations that we limit our screen time, sometimes it’s just. not. possible. So if you’re not going to ditch your phone and quit your job, is it still possible to have a healthy relationship with technology? According to Mindful Technology founder Liza Kindred, yes.
“The biggest problem with how people engage with technology is technology, not the people,” she says. “Our devices and favorite apps are all designed to keep us coming back for more. That being said, there are many ways for us to intervene in our own relationships with tech, so that we can live this aspect of our lives in a way we can be proud of. The one mistake too many of us make is that we don’t take the time to examine our own tech use, and to make the changes we would like to see.”
One of the ways she recommends doing so is by trying to reduce your exposure to blue light (more on that below), which is where products like bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Defense™ Radiant Protective Veil come in with a huge assist.
“There are many ways for us to intervene in our own relationships with tech, so that we can live this aspect of our lives in a way we can be proud of.”
The tinted moisturizer is designed to protect your skin from blue light (which is thought to have skin-damaging effects such as premature aging and pigmentation) with ingredients shown to have blue-light blocking effects, such as Peruvian cacao. Because you have enough to focus on without worrying your Netflix habit is wrecking your skin.
Scroll down for her expert intel on how to make your relationship with technology a little bit healthier—plus her wellness essentials for living your best techy life.
1. Manage blue light
Kindred recognizes it’s not realistic for people to break up with technology for good, but reducing your exposure to blue light is one of the most beneficial things you can do for your tech-savvy self.
“Blue light is so bad that a brand new study from the University of Toledo shows that blue light triggers toxic reactions in our retina molecules, which damages our light-sensitive cells, causing permanent damage,” Kindred says. “I’m sure we’d all agree: No one wants to go blind for Instagram.”
Her recommendation is to stop using all screens (yes, even televisions) an hour before bed, and to wear blue light-blocking glasses any time you look at screens, or at least in the evening. She also suggests using Apple’s Night Shift mode if you have an iPhone, and downloading the free app f.lux on your computer, which changes to warmer tones automatically as the sun goes down.
As for skin-protectors, bareMinerals Complexion Rescue Defense™ Radiant Protective Veil can help protect against the high-frequency visible light that emanates from devices as well as the sun. Think about it: You put sunscreen on when you go out in the sun, but you sit just a few feet away from your phone or computer for hours with no protection. Consider it tech-screen.
2. Track your usage
Even though Kindred’s job is teaching technologists how to make tech more beneficial and less disruptive, she’s susceptible to the same habits as the rest of us. *Checks phone mindlessly for the fifth time this hour.*
“The first time I used [a phone-usage tracking app], I learned that I checked my phone an average of 150 times a day, and I’m in the business of not doing so!” she says. “Knowing this really helped me to develop my own guidelines for how often and why I want to engage online. Start with a sense of curiosity.”
Apps like Checky, Moment, Mute, and Freedom offer ways for you to gather data about how you use your phone. Once you have the info, you’re ready to move on to step number three: developing a personal technology game-plan.
3. Set personal technology goals
How many times have you said to yourself, “I’ll just check Instagram one more time, and then I’ll go be productive.” Three hours later, you’re not really sure how you fell down that internet wormhole, and you’re kicking yourself for wasting all that time.
Kindred advocates for taking control of your relationship with technology by setting goals for yourself, just like you would at work or in the gym.
“If you want to use technology more intentionally…ask yourself why you are picking up your phone each time you do so,” she suggests. “If you feel like you might pick up your phone to get a dopamine hit, put your screen into black-and-white mode. If you lose hours on end to Netflix binges, make a rule that you turn the TV off and walk around for five minutes between each episode.”
“If you want to use technology more intentionally…ask yourself why you are picking up your phone each time you do so.”
If you’re really bold, you can try a phone-free day (or just an hour or two to get your feet wet), but her biggest recommendation is turning off all notifications not sent by a human. See ya, breaking news, Insta likes, and emails. “Your time is more valuable than that,” Kindred says.
Shop her wellness-minded tech recommendations below—like taking a “no phone” walk to get ice cream, amethyst crystals for counteracting the magnetic pull of devices, or wipes that remind you to treat your phone with respect (instead of an appendage).
Shop Healthy Tech Essentials
In partnership with bareMinerals
Top photo: Stocksy/Viktor Solomin
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