Technology as a Tool for Simple Living
🌞 15 WAYS TO USE TECHNOLOGY AS A PRACTICAL AND MENTAL HEALTH TOOL
First...let's tackle the ways it can make you feel good, be happier, and improve your mental well-being.
Mood boards are a great way to start your day. Looking at images of family, nature, and simple moments of beauty can make you feel calm, centered, and happy. Use your phone/computer to organize and view these images. Options include curated photo albums, Pinterest boards, and social media sites like Instagram.
I use calming and joyful pics to help de-stress when I'm having a bad moment. Looking at photos of nature gives me perspective and I can do my meditative breathing exercises while immersing myself in these pics. Here's my nature board at Pinterest. Check it out!
3. CONNECTING WITH FRIENDS
One of the most important things you can do for mental well-being is to connect with friends, family, folks who love and support you. Options: text, email, use social media sites, and FaceTime phone calls. I have a bestie and we check in every morning via text, discuss our upcoming day, our goals, our concerns. If we need to hear a voice, we'll call. 💗
Nothing has a faster impact on mood than music. As soon as you hear a nostalgic tune, or classical piece, or favorite country western song...boom! Your blood pressure goes down, you start smiling and tapping your toes. We all need this. You can use spotify, youtube, itunes, etc. Listen or watch music videos. You can do it privately with ear buds or blast your favorite music on a speaker. Instant happiness!
I remember the first time I got a cell phone, I was all, "I only need it to make phone calls. I don't need a camera or anything fancy." Hee hee. Suuuureeeee. The greatest thing about my phone is being able to take instant high-quality photos of gorgeous sunsets, flowers, my family, and of course...many, many dog pics. You can organize and save albums, text them to friends, even print them up as art in your home. Phone-cameras are a wonderful way to embrace simple living.
6. FUN HOBBIES
I love the fact that so many folks are obsessed with Wordle! It's such a wholesome fun activity, and it brings people together, sharing our victories and commiserating our failed attempts. Any type of game that is fun, keeps your brain sharp--that can be done alone or with friends--is a good hobby.
My husband loves his meditation app. There are tons of apps that can enhance your health journey. Check out apps for exercise, healthy diets, meditation, step counters, etc. They can help you to stay organized and keep health records, too.
Now onto practical ways to use technology to simplify your life...
8. DECLUTTERING TOOL
My kids taught me this. It's such an obvious, simple thing to do, but older folks are still clinging to filing cabinets and paperwork.
Use your phone-camera to take photos of important documents and keep them organized in digital albums/files. This absolutely saved me when we were buying and selling homes. Take pics of drivers licenses, passports, insurance cards, health care cards, any important documents. This changed my life!
9. PLANT/ANIMAL IDs
If hiking in nature is part of your simple living lifestyle, then apps that help to identify wildlife will be your new best friend. There are great apps for IDing birds, plants, mushrooms, seashells, pretty much everything.
You'll never be lost again. Remember when we had paper maps and got lost and had no clue about traffic conditions? Yeah, I remember. Using Google Maps or any GPS to get instant driving instructions is the greatest thing ever. Take all the stress out of driving, vacations, and unplanned exploration. Also, get weather updates and locations for coffee shops and gas stations. GPS is a huge life simplifier.
11. HOUSE AND GARDEN PROJECTS
Are you renovating a kitchen? Updating a bathroom? Creating a new garden? Start an idea board, collect links to good contractors, save pictures of other inspirational projects, bookmark websites to tile shops, bathroom design stores, etc. For our garden projects, I have Pinterest boards with different flower varieties that are optimal for our location. There are endless possibilities.
My most popular Pinterest board is my recipe collection. It's the ultimate digital cookbook! Finding easy and delicious recipes is an integral part of simple living. Preparing your own meals instead of getting take-out or eating processed food is healthier, a good bonding experience with family, and can be a relaxing ritual. Most recipes online can be saved to Pinterest.
13. SIMPLIFY CHORES
Everyone wants to cut down on time spent doing soul-sucking chores, like banking, paying bills, and the dreaded DMV. Being able to complete a car registration online instead of standing in a REAL line at the DMV is PRICELESS. You can also order groceries online, medicine at the pharmacy, pretty much any hideous chore that ruins your day. Don't be shy, try it. Sometimes these places deliver, and sometimes you have to pick up, but it still helps with a chunk of work.
Some folks have pretty daily planners, or a wall calendar, or a blackboard or whiteboard in the kitchen. (Sometimes color-coded!). But having so many different organizational systems can get confusing. I love the calendar and notes on my phone/computer. They sync with each other. They are color-coded. You can schedule reminders. I also love organizing emails into different folders. This has been a life-saver for me.
But...because I still love my printed planner, I use that every day, too. It's like a journal, decorated with washi tape and stickers. You can do both. Make it work for you.
15. CREATIVE INSPIRATION
Are you a writer? Artist? A knitter? You can create mood boards/idea boards for work, hobbies, really any artistic, creative activity.
I know many authors who make mood boards for their books and characters. I also use it for art ideas, flower design, and lots of home decorating.
📖 SIMPLE LIVING TIP: For folks who are getting older and having some trouble reading small print, using your phone or computer can be a life-saver. Adjust the font size and light for easier reading. And no more losing your spot when the bookmark falls out. Your book will be saved at the last page read. Happy Phone Reading!
We can all find the perfect balance between technology and old-fashioned habits that suits our personal needs. Happy Simple Living!
All my best,
#simple living #hygge #technologyforsimpleliving #cooking #Organization #decluttering #practicalliving #mentalwellbeing #mentalhealth