Emails, notifications and, of course, the urge to scroll, scroll and scroll some more. Our phones are a huge source of distraction that not only leads to stress and anxiety, but also takes us away from focusing on what truly matters – being present in the moment and building relationships with those right in front of us.
No matter their downsides, phones are here to stay, so rather than giving into their evil ways, we need to harness the power of technology for good. There are many ways phones can boost our overall positivity. It’s all about applying best practices from positive psychology, the scientific study of what makes people thrive.
What is Positive Psychology?
For years, psychology focused largely on dysfunctional and pathological disorders while ignoring the research of what conditions might lead to optimal functioning. This realization led to positive psychology.
Positive psychology research shows that incorporating practices related to mindfulness and gratitude into our daily lives and investing in experiences and relationships leads to increased self-esteem, resiliency and overall positivity.
4 Happy Phone Habits a Day
By using your phone to incorporate positive psychology practices into your daily routine, you can boost positivity. Here are five easy ways to use your phone for good, not evil:
- Mindfulness – Focusing your thoughts to be present in the moment rather than worrying about the past or the future will help reduce anxiety and stress. Try adding 15 minutes to your calendar each day for the upcoming week to practice mindful meditation. Use phone apps like Calm or Headspace to help guide you.
- Practice gratitude – Being thankful for the good things in life and expressing appreciation are key to higher self-esteem and empathy for yourself and others. Set a timer on your phone to go off at a random date and time to prompt you to pause and reflect on what you are grateful for in that moment.
- Invest in relationships – A sense of belonging with others helps bring meaning to life. Take just a few minutes out of each day to text a friend or colleague to let them know you are thinking of them and wishing them well.
- Invest in experiences – Experiences foster more lasting happiness than material things. Think about it, you have the anticipation of the experience, then the experience itself, and all the memories of the experience afterward. Keep memories of wonderful experiences alive by finding a photo of a fond memory on your phone and texting it to to those who shared in the experience with you for an unexpected pick-me-up for the day.