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Switching Your Mobile To Greyscale May Help Prevent Phone Addiction

A simple display setting change to greyscale mode on your mobile could help to stop you getting addicted to using your handset.


A simple display setting change to greyscale mode on your mobile could help to stop you from getting addicted to using your handset.

Most of us are a little dependent on that small piece of tech that snuggles inside our pocket or purse to some degree. Waiting for the train? Browse some social media. Getting a grande, iced, sugar-free, vanilla latte with soy milk at a coffee house? Quick snap for the ol’ Instagram. Sitting on the toilet for an extended period? Catch up on your daily dose of dopeness with Trillmag. You know how it goes.

You may be surprised to hear that phone addiction is a thing. Research conducted by British psychologists estimates that the average young adult between the ages of 18 and 33 spends a staggering 5 hours a day on their phone! On average, the participants in the study done by psychologists at the University of Lincoln whipped their phones out around 85 times in a day.

Anti-distraction campaigner Tristan Harris, Tech ethicist, and a former Google project manager explained on CBS This Morning how tech companies scheme to draw your attention. During the interview, Harris likened mobile phones to “Slot machines.” That works on a “Variable schedule of rewards”.

Addiction to phones is derived from a sort of reward scheme that comes from checking for a message or a Snapchat or a match on Tinder, almost like a form of gambling. Sometimes nothing to see. Sometimes it’s Facebook-like or you’ve been re-tweeted by somebody then that subconscious compulsion to know if there’s a notification is rewarded. It’s that little hit of gratification that compels folks to whip out the blinky little lightbox so regularly.

A simple tip from Harris suggests that switching your phone to greyscale is one way that you can combat potential phone addiction. Whilst this is certainly not a cure for phone addiction, by limiting the phone to greyscale and draining the pretty colors away from those delightful little app icons, it does become slightly less appealing to check if that meme with the car doing a hard right on the motorway is still doing the rounds.

So, if you just read this article on your phone may I suggest another one for you to read without advocating even more phone browsing. After that you should probably go outside and play, talk to a real person, build a life-size replica of Hugh Jackman out of bubblegum, I don’t know. Something constructive……

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