Science finally has the solution (very stupid) to reduce the time spent on our phones by 40 minutes

Science finally has the solution (very stupid) to reduce the time spent on our phones by 40 minutes

Everyone knows that we have become much, much too dependent on our phones (the fact of scrolling extensively even affects the evolution of our fingers!).

We would all benefit from spending less time in front of our screens (32 hours of screen time per week for an average French person) and more exercising, for example.

We’ve all read hundreds of solutions to detox, ranging from simply putting your phone physically somewhere else (a box at the entrance to the bedroom can do wonders for your sleep) to deleting certain time-consuming applications ( hello TikTok).

The fact is that we have gotten into the habit of unlocking our phone for everything and nothing, especially for nothing, often, simply out of stress or because we are bored.

We clear ourselves by saying that “it’s for work”, but do we really need to check our mailbox every 5 minutes.

Of course not, we know, we kindly veil our faces, if we actually sometimes take the phone to check our emails, we inevitably end up on Zalando or Instagram.

Yet, we know, all this is not good for us, not at all!

The Surgeon General has for example published a 25-page review warning against the harms of social media young people, including their mental health and well-being.

But children are not the only ones affected. Distracting apps also stress adults.

They take over our most precious resource, time, without our realizing it.

I think we can agree that no one will look back on their life regretting that they didn’t spend more time browsing through tweets or their TikTok feed.

A silly solution to our “phone addiction”

machine a sous
Why are slot machines full of colors and flashing lights? Bright colors are more stimulating and enjoyable!

A very simple solution to give us back our time could simply be set up in 2-3 clicks.

At least that’s what a recent study published in The Social Science Journal.

The idea, reduce the gray levels of your screen to make it more boring, less attractive…

Come to think of it, it’s not so stupid, a very red strawberry is attractive, imagine a completely gray strawberry…

When individuals view grayscale digital screens, their attentional system does not process content as stimulating as when viewing colored screens and does not receive the same gratification as a result.

To come to these conclusions, the scientists took 161 participants.

About half of them grayscaled their phone and kept it that way for a week. The other half kept their phone in color mode.

Result : the group that set their phone to grayscale reduced their phone use by about 40 minutes a day.

They went from a daily average from 255 minutes to 217 minutes.

Chance caused the groups to start with different levels of screen time. But the grayscale group saw a massive drop as the control group used their phones more.

It seems phones become less rewarding and engaging when color is removed from the screen.

The downside is that darkening your smartphone can be unsustainable.

20 participants assigned to the grayscale group snapped and got their phones back in color a few days later.

Those who held on said:

  • “It was very boring and I didn’t feel like being on my phone. There was nothing interesting to watch”.
  • “It was really weird not having any colors at all, and sometimes I got upset because I didn’t have any colors, even though I knew there should be colors. It was difficult for me.”

Many have adapted to this “sad” mode and noted an improvement in their lives, some said:

  • “It was a little weird at first, but honestly, it didn’t bother me as much anymore.”
  • “It wasn’t as bad as I thought, I got used to it after a few days.”

The study’s researcher wanted to take this a step further and see if the subjects were less anxious after using the grayscale mode.

Result :

Participants who had their phones grayscale showed a significant decrease in problematic smartphone use, anxiety, and screen time.

Ready to switch your phone to monochrome?

In addition to spending less time on your phone, monochrome mode will save your battery!

As far as Apple is concerned, the setting is buried in the bowels of the iPhone:

  1. Setting ->
  2. Accessibility ->
  3. Display and Text Size – Color Filters ->
  4. Enable and click Grayscale.

Pour Android :

You do not believe in it ? Give it a try, what have you got to lose?


Updated by Quentin on:26/05/2023

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