The 2nd Annual Digital Wellness Day will be celebrated on May 7th, 2021; where its mission is to help individuals, communities, and organizations with research-based tools and strategies to flourish in a digital age. Digital Wellness has emerged as a new concept, reflecting the increasing need for more balance; in how digital technologies are integrated into every aspect of human life. Digital Wellness is the optimum state of health, personal fulfillment, and interpersonal satisfaction; that each individual using technology is capable of achieving. Digital Wellness also incorporates strategies and solutions to achieve a state of digital well-being. It also reflects a way of life that integrates technology in our lives in a manner that allows us to live more fully in our social, natural, and digital environments.
Digital Wellness however shows up differently for each person. So we have eight elements needed for flourishing in the digital age. They are productivity, environment, communication, relationships, mental health, physical health, quantified self, and digital citizenship.
Digital Wellness In Productivity
Digital Wellness in the domain of productivity is reflected in high levels of focus, low levels of interruptions, multitasking, and work-life balance(downtime outside of work). Optimal productivity is in periods of distraction-free focused work, preventing online procrastination, focusing on one task at a time. Here are ways you can ensure your optimal productivity:
- Define what will be your “off work” time and communicate this clearly to co-workers and family members; (e.g no work communication after a certain time in the day or week, specific locations where you will not engage in work-related tasks, etc.)
- Set special break times to check news/sports feeds during the day to prevent distraction while working.
- Block off your calendar for periods of focused work so no meetings can be scheduled during your productive time
- Set aside your phone until after you’ve engaged in an energizing morning practice (whatever that means to you; i.e., working out, yoga, meditation, mindful coffee drinking)
Read Also [How To Increase Your Productivity At Home. ]
Digital Wellness in Environment
Digital flourishing in the domain of the environment is reflected in living in harmony with our physical and digital environment. Here are ways we can ensure the optimal use of our environment:
- Declutter your work area to create a flow conducive work environment
- Unplug once a week for a certain amount of time (10 min, 1 hour, 1 day)
- Set aside some time to reflect on your values and adjust your digital habits accordingly
- A shift from FOMO to JOMO (Joy Of Missing Out) by intentionally selecting when to engage online; and also when to step away from your screen.
Digital Wellness in Communication
Digital flourishing in the domain of communications reflects in behaviors that support a tech-life balance and work-life balance; by setting boundaries in the online work environment and allowing yourself a right to disconnect and adapt digital communication styles. Here are ways we can ensure optimal communication:
- Establish and collaborate on a communication charter with your work team; to document expected working hours and preferred communication channels.
- Create auto-email responses during your disconnected time; letting your colleagues know that you are unavailable and when you will be back online.
- Wear blue-light glasses to negate the physical toll on your eyes from harmful blue light emitted from screens
Digital Wellness in Relationships
Digital wellness in the domain of relationships reflects in uninterrupted offline connections and high online social support; engaging in positive social interactions online that link to strong ties. Here are ways we can ensure optimal relationships:
- Start a family gratitude practice. Each day, as a family, find 3 things you are grateful for and share them.
- Unsubscribe and unfollow communities that are not adding to your quality of life.
- Call or send a text message to a friend to check in on them; hence, let them know you are thinking about them.
- Also, a journal for two minutes a day about a meaningful moment in the last 24 hours.
Digital Wellness in Mental Health
Digital flourishing in the domain of mental health reflects in behaviors that indicate a controlled and intentional use of digital devices, applications, and social media; that is devoid of negative online social comparison, fear of missing out, and using technology to escape from reality. Here are ways we can ensure optimal mental health:
- Write down intentions for why/how you want to be online and post it by your desk.
- Set a limit on how often you will check email or social media each day/week and for how long.
- Invest in others by sharing words of encouragement, gratitude, positive messages, or funny stories
- Try to make more phone calls rather than communicating through text or social media
Digital Wellness in Physical Health
Digital wellness in the domain of physical health reflects in behaviors that indicate a
high body awareness related to technology use including ergonomics, eye health, sleep health, and recovery. Here are ways we can ensure optimal physical health:
- Hold your phone at eye level while reading; consider elevating your computer to eye level with a book, or shelf.
- Alternate between sitting and standing at your desk throughout the day
- Wear blue-light filtering glasses when working on a screen in the evening
- Stop using your phone at least 30 minutes before bedtime
- Also, pay attention to your body’s clues (Are you cold/hot? Do you have a headache?)
Digital Wellness in Quantified Self
Digital flourishing in the domain of quantified self is reflected in using technology to measure various personal biomarkers and behaviors; build a personal understanding of one’s health data and optimize health with behavior change from learned health data. Here are ways we can ensure our optimal quantified self:
- Create your own health experiment. Use health tracking apps to understand your baseline health; also implement quantitative changes over time as you incorporate changes in your routine.
- Post a calendar workout challenge on social media; that you can share with friends and keep accountable.
- Focus on one area of your health to track or receive notifications to decrease information overload with an applicable wearable
- Also, use a sleep app or wearable that logs your sleep hours and wake patterns.
Digital Wellness in Digital Citizenship
Digital flourishing in the domain of digital citizenship includes high skills in online communication etiquette, privacy, and information/news literacy. Here are ways we can ensure optimal digital citizenship:
- Pause before posting to ask yourself “Would I say this out loud to the person in their face? Would I share this out loud in a football stadium full of strangers? Do I want this information to be permanent and public?”
- Check the privacy settings on your phone, your computer browsers, and/or your gaming devices
- Do a Google “selfie” to see what information about yourself is publicly available
- Always re-read your post in full before sharing
- Also, double-check the credibility of each source of news you come across online
Are you getting the most out of your digital devices? Also, do you feel like you are flourishing in your digital life? Now is a great opportunity to pause and reflect. Take the survey by the Digital Wellness Institute to get your free, Digital Wellness checkup!
Source: Digital Wellness Toolkit 2021