intentional scrolling

Intentional scrolling: 20 better things to do on your device

Could we all get a little more intentional with our scrolling and find some better ways to spend our time on our phone, tablet or digital device?

We all know the black hole that is mindless scrolling.  The 5 minutes or 55 minutes here and there as we strive to fill in any smidgen of spare time to alleviate boredom, prevent FOMO or conquer multitasking.

Working in this space, has certainly highlighted to me the need for more intentionality about how we spend our time as we strive to make better choices for ourselves. Ultimately we also want to instil in our children digital behaviours that have their wellbeing at heart, whilst still allowing them to thrive.

So I have compiled a list of great things we can do online to allow this to happen.  Of course this is not at the expense of all the other things we need in our lives… the outdoor play, the active play, the face to face interactions and the downtime. But if we are going to continue to become immersed in a digital world, let’s make sure that some of that time spent allows for growth, learning and challenge.

  1. Write a list of historical moments you would like to know more about. Those events you never learnt about in school but would like a little more understanding. Next time you are bored, pop one in a google search and see what you discover.
  2. Grab a series of photos, maybe from a recent holiday, or any event, and put them in a slideshow, add some music and create a short video masterpiece.
  3. Interview your kids using the video feature on your phone. Ask them any number of random questions and you have a priceless keepsake.
  4. Get your kids to interview you. Ask them to think of some questions, maybe about your childhood, your early memories of them as a child. What a great keepsake for them too.
  5. Write something. Get out a notes app or your google docs and just write. A journal, a poem, that book you wanted to start.
  6. Send a message, text or email to someone to tell them your appreciate them or admire something they have achieved.
  7. Search a recipe of something you’ve never cooked and give it a whirl.
  8. If you’ve never done a mediation, search an app and find your zen.
  9. Think of a new skill you would like to learn….. instead of scrolling aimlessly at others achievements, see if you can get some pointers online.
  10. Download a reading app, grab a book online and always have something on the go you can reach for in those downtimes.
  11. Search a podcast, maybe a subject area you don’t know a lot about, pop the headphones in and make those mundane chores a little more bearable.
  12. Go through your emails and unsubscribe to any you haven’t opened recently. (I absolutely need to do this one!)
  13. Delete any apps on your phone you haven’t used in the last few months.
  14. Make a playlist of your favourite songs, or songs from different eras or different moods.
  15. Use the recording feature to record messages, thoughts or ideas with your voice for those moments you can’t type or write.
  16. Read a bookmarked article or saved video. We are not always in the headspace to read articles we are interested in at the time we are scrolling, but having them saved somewhere for easy access will ensure they don’t get forgotten.
  17. Play a game of words with friends, chess, or any game that gets those brain cells ticking over.
  18. Is there a language you’ve always wanted to learn? Maybe you see some exotic travel destination in your future where knowing a few phrases could be of help. There’s plenty of apps for that.
  19. Find a quick workout to get moving even if only for 10 minutes. Maybe you don’t want to start doing ‘burpies’ or squats whilst your waiting in the supermarket queue, but if there is space and a few minutes, there are plenty of online workouts to keep you active.
  20. Finally, this one requires leaving the phone at home (or keeping it in the back pocket if you want to track your distance travelled), and head out for a big walk (or even a little one) and breath in the fresh air. Explore the world around you, take note of your senses, what can you see, feel and hear that you usually wouldn’t?

So there you have an array of things you can do to avoid the mindless scroll. Couple this with my list of 50 things to do with your kids that doesn’t involve technology and you can strive to achieve balance and growth even in and amongst a screen filled world.


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