My participation in this campaign is sponsored with Google and Forward Influence Network. It’s 100% my own opinion #ad #DigitalWellbeing
Unless you have been living under a rock, technology seems to be a priority in our society. And while there are a ton of great advances and reasons to have technology at our fingertips this technology has changed the way we all live. We are literally connected all day long, this includes browsing on social media, checking emails, playing games with friends, and helping the kids with homework. Again, none of these are bad things but I do think we all need to be more aware of how technology, even though we are connected, takes us away from family and in the moment experiences.
ABOUT GOOGLE’S DIGITAL WELLBEING MISSION
Google is here and is on a mission. Google is designing helpful products that bring positivity to people’s lives by improving them. As technology becomes more and more a part of our day-to-day lives, we know that it can also distract us from the things that are most important to us in life.
Google has created Digital Wellbeing, this offers tools and resources to help us find and maintain balance with technology. Balance in life can be hard but these tools and resources are unbelievably helpful. Google has decided that they have a responsibility to help all of us technology users and lovers to find that balance!
Google’s Digital Wellbeing helpful resources include a self-reflection quiz, a Family Conversation Guide, expert video content, and a series of tools. Having access to these tools and resources help me feel great about the choices I am making concerning my family and technology. We are able to begin to make and create healthy digital habits.
GOOGLE’S DIGITAL WELLBEING RESOURCES AND TOOLS
To start focusing on your family’s digital wellbeing it is important to be ready for self-reflection. I know that every single person in our family has areas that we need to work on. One of the tools that I have loved to use is the self-reflection tool. This tool asks simple questions to see what your or your family member’s relationship is with technology. Once you share your experience, the tool will suggest some tips and tools that could help you or your family member achieve a personal sense of Digital Wellbeing.
Once you use the self-reflection tool you can also take advantage of the videos that Google provides that include interviews with experts & everyday users to shed light on technology use. Included in these videos are actionable tips to help people develop a better balance with their digital devices.
How Your Family Can Improve Their Digital Wellbeing
So the tools and resources are here and available but how do we implement and being to improve our digital wellbeing?
Time To Unplug
We love traveling as a family but with every trip comes the possibility of needing to check in for work, school and use technology as a distraction during travel time. All of these things are valid but it is important to stop those habits to be in the moment with the people you love. This is a struggle for me when it comes to work – I really worry about missing that amazing opportunity or email but the fact is, when I am doing that, I am missing out on memories and moments with my family.
Tools like the email auto reply can make it easy to set it and forget it. This means while I am out enjoying my time, unplugged my emails are being managed. Stepping away from work is easier said than done but I know that with helpful tools and resources from Google I will be able to get into a better routine of being able to unplug which will also lead to my kids finding more moments of being unplugged.
Find A Balance – Set Rules
The key is finding that balance for the whole family. Look, honestly I have days that it is just easier to let the kids play on the tablets or computers but generally it is not something I want them doing for too much time during the day because I know how important their digital wellbeing is at this young age.
Google makes it easy to set some rules and boundaries with the App Timers tool. This tool allows you to set limits on the amount of time each child spend in certain apps. When the limit is close to being met, they will receive a friendly reminder. When the time limit runs out, the app is paused for the rest of the day. Love this option! To access and set up App Timers, go to the Dashboard and then click the hourglass next to the app you want to set a limit on. Simply select a daily time limit that’s appropriate for your kiddo!
Say Goodbye To Distractions
I spend my day on technology basically all day. I don’t know about you but my productivity goes WAY down when there are constant distractions…email being one of those. I am a freak when it comes to checking emails so I needed to find a tool that would help me stay focused and not always moving away from the task at hand to check those “dings” on my phone or computer.
Google offers a number of tools to help you decide how and when your devices will send you notifications. On Android, there is a Do Not Disturb option to limit all interruptions. It is also possible to set Do Not Disturb to come on automatically during certain times of the day. This is fantastic for me when I am trying to create set work hours while at home.
Other Tools We Love
While exploring your family’s Digital Wellbeing make sure you check out other resources like Family Link, Wind Down and Gray Scale and Google Assistant. All family situations look different so these tools might work well in your situation or you might find different resource that assists you in finding and improving the digital wellbeing of your family and yourself.