Little by little, the “digital wellness” movement is drawing attention to the havoc that digital over-consumption is wreaking on our mental and physical wellbeing and also acting upon it. A growing number of tech developers and behavioral scientists are developing apps that rein in emails, texts, incessant news alerts and requests of all sorts to put users back in control.
They have had some recent major success, with both Google and Apple announcing that they will incorporate some aspects of digital wellness apps into their upcoming operating systems. In particular, users will be able to track (and limit) the amount of time they spend on their devices. The simple takeaway from a wellbeing perspective: Regaining control of our time and taking back possession of our attention (the scarcest commodity in today’s fast-paced world) equate to the best possible antidote to tech addiction.
Also in the wellness tech space, meditation is attempting to move towards medication. Headspace, a well-known American mindfulness app that reports user figures of 30 million, is in the process of setting up a subsidiary—Headspace Health—whose purpose would be to develop FDA-approved meditation and mindfulness treatments for health issues. The idea is for health professionals to prescribe meditation through an app that would include a specific dose and meditation technique for particular health conditions.