How to Organise Your Phone to Make it Less Stressful
Everyday we have countless interactions with our beloved screens – research suggests people look at their phones up to 150 times per day. And a lot of that time is spent doing the same tasks: tap out a response to an email, check Facebook, skip a song, check Facebook again.
But, despite spending so much time with our phones, we rarely stop and think: what could I change to make this all a bit less stressfull? Turns out you can do a lot. And these tips will get you started on the essential journey to de-stressing your screen time.
While you're here, why not improve your phone's security and privacy settings? We've got jargon-free, need-to-know guides for both Android and iOS.
Sort your apps
Let's start with the basics. There's a myriad of different ways to organise your apps but whichever you pick, it's better than having multiple pages of unsorted applications.
Both iOS and Android phones allow you to drag an app icon onto another to create a folder. You can organise folders by type (entertainment, productivity) or by actions (taking photos, writing).
European Competition Commissioner Margarete Vestager organises her apps by colour. There are also slightly more extreme methods.
Former Googler Tristan Harris has advocated this method. The design ethicist claims making your iPhone or Android greyscale will help people become less reliant on them. While there doesn't appear to be any robust scientific evidence behind this, the experience may be a little more relaxing.
Grayscale modes can be found in the settings of both iPhone and Android devices. Though be warned: watching videos on YouTube and thumbing through Instagram may be a little less interesting.
Push notifications are intrusive and there's no need for every app to demand your attention whenever it wants. Review your settings for push notifications and turn off all those that aren't essential. And while you're at it why not turn off all those breaking news alerts.
Set do not disturb modes
Android and iOS both have do not disturb modes. These stop calls, messages, and other notifications from appearing. At the very least, do not disturb modes should be scheduled for when you're sleeping. Nobody wants to be woken up by an email from their boss. Also consider turning on do not disturb during meetings or when you walk in the front door and want to spend time with your family.
Prepare for bed
Bright blue light from screens right before bed is said to be harmful to your health. Both Android and iOS have options that are kinder to your eyes at certain times. On iOS, Night Shift alters the colour of your screen to be warmer and you can set the times it happens at. It can be found in your phone's settings. And on Android, a similar night mode feature can be enabled through the phone's settings.