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  • Writer's pictureashley saile

Digital Minimalism

Est. Read Time: 3 min.

A Busy Working Mom is Sitting on a bench, talking on her cellphone and typing on her laptop.  The woman's child is seated next the bench in his stroller while she works.
Busy Working Mom

Digital Minimalism is a 21st century term in response to the barrage of technological advances. Coined by Author and Computer Scientist, Cal Newport, Digital Minimalism strives to simplify your digital life . There are many great books including Newport’s Digital Minimalism (2019), and A World Without Email (2021), that offer in depth tips about how to lessen the technological pressures we feel daily. (Ref 1)

Minimalist, Parent and Musician, Kendrick Lamar, created an “Anti-Smartphone” called the Light Phone 2 through his company pgLang, which sold out in the first week. This phone allows for a distraction free life, by only letting its users talk, text, and use basic directions. It cannot be connected to social media, email, or any apps. Allowing the user to focus on important tasks without the distraction of a ping every second. The Light Phone 2 is a great option for parents who want the reliability of a phone to connect with their kids, without the distraction that smartphones present. (Ref 2)

Digital Technology has many benefits as it does drawbacks. For example, always being connected to email, can make the user feel more productive and mobile. The user can schedule a rideshare through an app to get to the airport faster than the subway. For those people who feel too connected all the time, it can be hard to unplug from the virtual world. “FOMO” (Fear Of Missing Out) to those who aren’t Kardashian Fans, is a term that people used extensively in 2011 so much that it made it into the Oxford Dictionary in 2013. This was likely due to the early creators on Instagram, and went viral when high profile celebrities like the Kardashian’s used the term often in media. FOMO replaced “Keeping Up With The Jones’” but both ideas are the same. In our capitalist society, we tend to want to have the latest smartphones, the latest fashion trends, luxury cars, and amazing travel experiences that we can show off to the world. These trends were fueled by this “look at me now” culture of needing to be validated and seen, which is a natural human instinct.

Presently, roughly 20 years after social media companies started, we are collectively starting to realize how much screen time addiction has changed our personalities. Mental Health Professionals are consistently advocating for less screen time, as are Pediatricians. According to a study published in Cureus (Nakshine,Vaishnavi S. Increased Screen Time as a Cause of Declining Physical, Psychological Health, and Sleep Patterns: A Literary Review. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9638701/ 2022 Oct 8. Web. 2023 Nov 5)(Ref 3)

Increased screen time can result in the following:

  • Decreased Sleep due to social media notifications constantly alerting the user

  • Stress from FOMO increases anxiety

  • Screen time produces “light-at-night”, which in turn disrupts the body's ability to produce melatonin

  • Screen time induces stress reactions

  • Screen time overloads the sensory system, fractures attention, and depletes mental reserves

  • Screen-time reduces physical activity levels and exposure to “green time”

All of these factors lead to increased stress, and decreased attention span, making it harder for adults and children to concentrate through their day. Many young adults are turning off their phones for hours a day just to get a break from FOMO of social media. They are realizing with the help of mental health professionals that this is really having a negative effect on their brain. One of the biggest challenges to this, is also having anxiety of not having a smartphone. Previously we could all hail a taxi in a major city and get to where we need to go. Now with the advent of rideshare companies, taxi’s aren’t as readily available as they used to be.

How do we solve this problem of getting around without a smartphone??

One way is through a rideshare company like Tremp! Tremp is unique in the fact that the customer calls or texts them directly, like an old-school dispatch service. This allows people who don’t use smartphones or apps for either religious, mental health, or privacy concerns, a way to always be able to connect with a rideshare and get to where they need to go.

Tremp is an easy service to use. Just call/text their number (732-479-7080)and they will use the UBER or LYFT platforms to book your ride. Tremp will text you the details of the driver, so you know who is picking you up, what time, etc.

The next time you need a ride, and don’t have a smartphone or app consider using Tremp! Tremp currently charges 10 percent above the ride share with a $2 minimum. For example, if a rideshare costs $10 the overall Tremp fee will add $2 and make the ride $12. On a ride of $25 a 10% Tremp fee would make the overall cost $27.77. The Tremp fee is subject to change. There no setup or monthly fees!


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