How to Manage Your Device’s Screen Time and Why

by Samuel Princess Oghenekeno
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Screen time

Today, many people struggle with a widespread issue called screen addiction.

It may have a negative effect on daily activities, making it challenging to concentrate on crucial tasks and encouraging mindless scrolling. The importance of managing screen time is discussed in this article, along with helpful advice on how to accomplish that.

When you realise the importance of maintaining a good screen-time balance, you can reclaim your time and devote it to other fulfilling pursuits. Let’s dive in and figure out how to control our screen usage for a better, more balanced life.

Why Should You Manage Your Device’s Screen Time?

Is it really important to regulate how much time on your device? Does how much time you spend on your phone affect your personal life? Let’s see.

  1. It may cause harm to your well-being

First and foremost, using your phone excessively might be bad for your physical and mental health. Spending too much time on your phone takes you away from real connections and makes you less productive, but when we control our phone use, we can focus on spending time with people, growing personally, and living a happier life.

Your neck, back, and shoulder muscles can become sore with prolonged use of a device while slumped over it or when gazing down at it. Long-term holding of certain positions can cause pain and perhaps major musculoskeletal problems, often known as tech neck.

Read Also: Easy Ways to Improve Health and Fitness Through Healthy Outdoor Activity

  1. Exposure to blue light 

Most of us spend many hours daily using electronic devices, ranging from TVs to cell phones, tablets, and gaming consoles. However, doing this for a prolonged period may hurt our health. How does this blue ray from the screens affect us, you may ask? 

Well, prolonged exposure to blue light may harm our retinal cells and impair our eyesight. People tend to blink less when using digital gadgets, which increases the risk of dry eyes and eye strain. Exposure to this blue ray can also disturb sleep patterns. This happens because the blue light suppresses the melatonin (a hormone that regulates sleep) our body produces, which leads to a lack of quality rest and sleep.

If you need to use your device longer than you should, maybe because your work demands it, you may need to get an anti-blue ray glass. It’s a kind of glass that blocks or filters out the harmful blue rays emitted by the screen. However, the importance of minimizing exposure cannot be over-emphasized.

Read also: Managing the negative effects of technology on health.

  1. It may be addicting

Even though social media and cell phones have been around for more than 20 years, researchers are still learning about their effects on people. According to recent studies, social media and smartphones can lead to addictive behaviours in people. These behaviours include:

  • Constantly thinking about the platform or device and craving to use it.
  • Using the apps to cope with stress or alter their mood.
  • Going through withdrawal symptoms when they can’t use their phone or apps.

It is concerning if these behaviours worsen and interfere with daily life.

  1. It may hinder relationship-building 

Compared to previous generations, those who spend time on screens are less likely to be physically active, such as going for walks, working in the garden, playing sports, or completing projects. Obesity and other physical health issues are closely connected to a sedentary lifestyle. It also hinders a person from building meaningful connections with people in the physical world since they are always focused on their devices.

How to Manage Your Device’s Screen Time

To enhance self-development and make time for other valuable things, you need to manage how much time you spend on your phone. Here are some steps you may follow to help you manage your screen time successfully:

  1. Reward yourself with a productivity app

The first step to managing your phone’s screen time that I recommend is to reward yourself for doing so. Many productivity applications will give you points for putting down your phone. The benefit increases with time spent away from a phone. The Forest is the app I like best out of these.

The moment you launch the app, a tree begins to grow. Before the timer expires, if you use any other apps on your phone, your tree will die, and you won’t receive anything. Even though there is no tangible reward, watching the tiny trees develop is very satisfying. With Forest, you can unlock more trees to grow as you go and grow more trees. Although it may seem foolish initially, the joy of watching my forest bloom motivated me to continue revising for my university exams instead of using my phone.

It’s an awesome initiative that if you earn enough points, Forest will actually plant genuine trees for you. Cut back on your screen time while also helping the environment! “Stay focused, be present” is their catchphrase, which is precisely what you want when you go out on a mission to cut back on screen time. You may find more productivity apps on the Play Store or Apple Store.

Read Also: 8 Must-Have Mobile Apps for University Students in Nigeria

  1. Turn off notification

One of the ways to manage your screen time is by disabling unwanted notifications on your devices to reduce distractions. This lessens the urge to check your phone or computer frequently. 

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  1. Read a book

If you always have a book with you, you always have a different alternative for what to do when you would normally grab your phone. If you have a book beside you or in your bag each day, you may develop the habit of reaching for that instead.

You benefit from both reading much more and less on screens! What about ebooks, though? 

Although I always have a few downloads on my phone, and I know how convenient ebooks are, a paperback is always preferable for you. When reading an ebook, it might be all too easy to scroll through Instagram or tap any random notification that pops up at the top of your screen instead of sticking with the story.

Read Also: 12 must-read self-help books for self-improvement

  1. Keep your phone outside your room

 It’s important to make your bedroom cosy and consciously block out thoughts about work emails, social media notifications, and other online distractions to achieve faster and more peaceful sleep. Create a soothing atmosphere with soft lighting, comfortable bedding, and tidy space. Before bed, disconnect from technology and charge your phone in a different room. Doing this can create a peaceful sleep environment that promotes restful nights and energized mornings.

  1. Set specific goals 

Setting specific goals is crucial when aiming to reduce screen time as an adult. Start by reflecting on your current screen habits and identifying areas where you want to make changes. It could be decreasing social media use, limiting entertainment streaming, or reducing smartphone dependency. 

Next, set measurable goals that are realistic and achievable, such as reducing screen time by 30 minutes per day or setting specific time limits for certain activities. Make your goals time-bound, setting deadlines to create a sense of urgency. Write them down and keep them visible to stay focused. Regularly track your progress, celebrate milestones, and reward yourself. By setting specific goals, you can effectively work towards reducing screen time and finding a healthier balance in your life.

  1. Use a time-tracking tool

Imagine having a personal time-tracking tool at your fingertips, conveniently built into your devices. It is a helpful companion, providing concrete data and gently encouraging you to become more mindful of your screen time. This powerful tool allows you to regain control and make informed decisions about allocating your time online.

Using these tracking tools and services, you may learn a lot about your online habits and actions. It provides a transparent view of your screen usage, highlighting any areas where you might be unknowingly wasting too much time. With this newfound knowledge in hand, you can set specific goals and gradually cut back on screen time to promote a better and more balanced lifestyle. 

Seeing your efforts take shape in front of you is inspiring and a reminder to keep working hard and be thoughtful about how you use your limited time. You take on the role of the captain by adopting screen time tracking, guiding your digital experiences toward a more harmonious balance between the virtual world and your real-world pursuits.

Read Also: 10 Effective Time Management Tips for Nigerian Students

  1. Seek social interactions offline

Make conscious attempts to encourage in-person conversations and real-world ties. Prioritize spending time in person with your family, friends, and coworkers, and rely less on Internet communication as your main method of interaction.

Actively plan events, attend social gatherings, join clubs or interest groups that share your interests, or just plan regular outings with loved ones. Accepting these offline social contacts enables the development of more meaningful connections, bolstering relationships, and enjoying the significant advantages of real human connection, leading to a more peaceful and fulfilling living.


Managing screen time is very important in this digital age. When you recognize the importance of finding a healthy balance and implementing practical strategies, you can regain control over your screen habits and redirect your attention towards more meaningful pursuits. 

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Edited by Emmanuel Odebiyi

About Author

Samuel Princess Oghenekeno
Samuel Princess Oghenekeno
Samuel Princess Oghenekeno is an experienced content and creative writer. She optimizes content with excellent data structure, relevant keywords, and with other important SEO strategies that drive good organic traffic to your website. She is also a social media manager and personal development and mental health advocate.

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