Reducing Screen Time [Grayscale Mode]
Reducing Screen Time
SUPERHUMAN SCORE: 8.25
In 2 minutes, you’ll get a brutally effective hack for reducing your mobile screen time.
Just how effective is it?
You’ll cut screen time by 50 minutes per day (according to this study).
The Wall Street Journal recently published an article about how grayscale mode reduces phone usage more than “app limits” and “downtime” features.
Let’s dive in.
In every edition of System Sunday, I assess the featured system across three superhuman dimensions: impact, setup, and maintenance.
Unlike your typical review, I focus on factors that influence personal growth. Get to know the evaluation system.
Grayscale mode works because it blunts the colorful visual stimulus. In other words, it makes your phone less addictive (and generally unappealing to engage with).
Fewer candy-colored apps means less temptation for dopamine snacks.
Here’s a side-by-side comparison:
The setup is simple.
- Display and Text Size
- Color Filters On
- Grayscale Checked
Tip for iPhone: Create a shortcut to toggle between color and grayscale (via a triple click on the side button). How to configure the shortcut:
- Accessibility Shortcut (near the bottom)
- Select Color Filters
- Under the Display section, click Text and Display
- Select Color Correction, then choose the Grayscale option
This week's system gets a relatively low maintenance score of 6.5/10.
Why? Well, it’s easy to fall out of the habit of grayscale mode.
I shared the shortcut earlier for easy toggle on/off because sometimes it’s useful to NOT be in grayscale (like if you need to review creative work). But the tradeoff of ease is defaulting back to addictive color.
In an ideal world, one could program their phone to automatically reset to grayscale daily.
BRINGING IT HOME
I joke that the most productive app on your phone is called airplane mode.
Now, the second-best? Grayscale mode.
It’s a feature that gives you time rather than takes it.
All systems go,
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