Reduce your screen time and make the most of the outdoors!
Improve your physical health and get active
We know that physical activity is good for our health, but devices don’t help as being constantly distracted could be cutting into your individual and family’s exercise regime and time spent outside.
Maintaining healthy habits can be hard when you spend lots of time using screens and devices for work and entertainment.
Limiting or restricting time on your device can help prevent obesity and conditions related to excess weight gain including type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and free up more time for exercise and play.
Getting children outside might be a battle of will sometimes, but organising and sticking to some time spent outside will make sure everyone is keeping active and getting their recommended 60 minutes of daily activity.
Free up time to have fun playing and exploring
Exploring and learning about the world is an important part of everyday life.
Children are naturally curious, so instead of spending time on devices, encourage yourself and your family to get outside, explore your surroundings and try some new activities.
Make the most of the weather when it’s good, and go for a bike ride or walk, visit a park, or discover a new local nature trail. Now is also a great time to start pinpointing a great spot ready to start foraging for blackberries!
Decreasing screen time also allows for more time for free play and creative activities; colouring, reading, crafting or other activities are great ways for kids to use their imagination.
Make social connections
Connecting with others is crucial for us to feel cared for and loved. Children look to their parents and caregivers for this sense of belonging and to feel connected.
Adults may find it within their families and friends but devices can damage these relationships if you spend too long on them and it doesn’t take long for negative feelings to creep in.
Having a TV on, even as background noise, will direct your focus on it rather than what is happening around you, so spending less time on your screens can result in better face-to-face social skills and may also help strengthen the family bond.
When parents are engaging with a screen, children may also feel they need to compete for attention which could encourage bad behaviour in order to regain your attention. By putting down your device, children may feel their parents are more emotionally available and connected.
Boost your mood
Putting down your phone and going outside or doing an activity you enjoy can be a great mood booster. Getting some fresh air, and immersing yourself in nature is a great distraction and instantly improves your mood.
It can also make you feel more accomplished, improve your well-being and helps keep you active and healthy.
If you’re suffering from low mood, engaging in social activities helps you connect with others and improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Children who spend less time looking at screens are more likely to have better behaviour and divided attention because decreasing screen time can improve concentration and focus.
Being part of the community around you and feeling connected to others is beneficial to your health.
Families who eat meals together and turn off electronics during meals or family time, eliminate distractions and children tend to show better academic scores and generally be healthier individuals.
Free time spent normally used on devices can instead be used finding events in your community, volunteering, joining a sports team or connecting time with a group.
Feeling a sense of belonging and being social is a good way to help manage stress. Having support and feeling that you are not alone can help you cope with difficult times.
While technology is a great tool, it also can hinder your wellness and make you feel disconnected from those around you. Try taking a break from devices and see how this frees up more time to be active and enjoy time with loved ones.