We’re spending more and more of our lives looking at digital screens. Research conducted by Data Reportal shows a daily average of 6 hours and 37 minutes of screen time across various media platforms and devices. The age range of these findings was 16-64 years, which is about 2 thirds of the world’s population.
People all over the world are spending more time on their screens than ever before. According to findings from Data Reportal, individuals aged 16-64 are dedicating an average of 6 hours and 37 minutes everyday, towards screen time across all media platforms and devices.
This is consistent across different regions, with South Africa topping the list with over 10 hours a day, according to Statista. Whether it’s through watching television, using phones, or using your laptop, screen time has increased rapidly since the lockdown.
Why Has Screen Time Increased?
The transition to remote work has been a significant factor in the escalation of screen time over recent years. As highlighted in a survey by All About Vision, remote workers are now engaged with screens for about 13 hours each day, which is a noticeable increase compared to those working on-site.
This uptick is not only attributed to work-related computer use but also to additional hours spent on social media, phone usage, and streaming content. The survey reveals that remote workers are spending approximately 50 minutes more on these activities compared to their office-going counterparts.
Johann Hari, a renowned writer and journalist, in his book “Stolen Focus: Why You Can’t Pay Attention—and How to Think Deeply Again”, points out the profound impact of remote work applications like Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Slack on our concentration and creativity.
The Rise of Tech Products
With the advancing and developing of new tech devices such as the rise of the iPhone, more people have gained access to “portable” modes of time on the screen each day. These advancements have especially increased screen time among teenagers and young adults.
It goes without saying, though, before all the latest tech products had launched, screen time was still significantly high. This would’ve been anything from watching television, DVDs, computers, gaming or using your BlackBerry. According to the NIH, in 2013, 68% of children under the age of 3 years old in their daily lives. Different reports and researchers indicate there has only been an increase of about 18-50 minutes of screen time since then.
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What Does This Mean for Screen Time in the UK?
In the UK, the trend is similar, with people increasingly turning to screens for both work and leisure. The total screen time for UK users shows a considerable amount of daily engagement with digital devices. Moreover, TMT’s prediction for the UK indicates that social media alone is expected to account for a 13% share of total screen time, up from 10% in 2017. This shift highlights the growing importance of digital platforms in the daily lives of UK residents.
How to Detox From Screens This Holiday Season
While our screen times are generally high, we can find ways to manage and maintain the amount of time we spend on our devices or in front of our screens this festive season, whether you are watching movies, enjoying a website like Slotsoo or anything else you may use a screen for, so that we can be present and enjoy time with the world around us.
Computers & Television
Many of us have gotten used to having screens in front of us during times where we could be bonding. It is important to create time away from your computer screen during the festive. In the case that you do have to workas a remote worker during the holidays, take 10-15 minute breaks every hour to stretch your legs and drink a glass of water.
When it comes to meal times, try to minimise how many meals you and your family share while watching television. Try to sit at the dining table, or have picnics on the floor while you bond in your lounge, with the TV off.
For many, the TikTok app has become a big contributor to an increase in screen time. To limit screen time on the TikTok app, you can use its built-in screen time management tools. Start by tapping your Profile, then go to the Menu and select Settings and privacy. Under the Screen time section, you can set a Daily screen time limit, which will notify you when you reach the set time.
There is also have the option to schedule Screen time breaks, which remind you to take a break after a certain period of use.
Additionally, Sleep reminders can be set to mute notifications after a specified bedtime, helping promote better sleep. Finally, the Screen time dashboard provides a summary of your weekly TikTok usage, offering insights into your app habits. Remember, you can modify these settings anytime to suit your digital well-being needs.
Other Ways to Digital Detox
Create Device-Free Zones
Designate areas in your home, such as bedrooms, where digital devices are not allowed, to reduce screen dependency. This could reduce chances of sleepless nights from scrolling on your phone in bed in the late and early hours of each day.
Engage in Offline Activities
Rediscover hobbies and activities that don’t involve screens, such as reading physical books, playing sports, or enjoying board games. This also stimulates creative thinking and physical well-being as a whole.
Take time to reflect, meditate, or simply enjoy the present moment without digital distractions. Engaging in mindfulness practices can better one’s mental clarity, managing stress, and your overall emotional health, so that you live a more balanced lifestyle.
Establish a Routine
Create a consistent daily routine that prioritises screen-free activities, helping you to gradually reduce reliance on digital devices. This structured approach fosters discipline, enhances time management skills, and ensures a more productive day without the constant interruption of technology.