Today, how about you give yourself a little boost? Cell phone affirmations, anyone? I saw this idea on Instagram several weeks ago and thought I would give it a whirl. In the screenshot I saw, the basic folder names on their home screen had been replaced with affirmations — so instead of “Finance,” my money apps folder now reads, “I am rich.” Gone is the “Games” label — now it says “I can play.” Health and medical-type apps proclaim, “I am healthy,” while social apps remind me that “I am connected.” House and home apps remind me, “I am sheltered.”
I’ve been thinking about these little phrases off and on over the last few weeks, curious to see if I noticed any changes to my outlook, and after a month or so, I think I can confirm a change for the better. More and more lately I have been feeling the collective societal clapback against “screen time” and media influence, to the point that Instagram can feel like too-guilty a pleasure, or playing a game on my phone to unwind feels like time I should use to do other things. While there are definite issues with too much time spent online, guilt for me was sometimes pushing the pendulum too far in the other direction. Reminding myself that “I am connected” when I go to open Instagram now reminds me that I am able to connect with a bigger world of inspiration and ideas, people and places. “I can play,” reminds me to approach games with that spirit – not as mind-numbing time wasters, but small opportunities for play amidst a busy day. And even though “I am rich” can feel a little wry when ye olde bank balance is low, it is also a great reminder that I AM rich, regardless of that balance — rich in love, in friends, in joy, and in opportunities.
As far as remembering to do affirmations or other such gratitude practices, this one seemed low-lift and easy. I didn’t have to remind myself to make time for something extra: I swipe my phone open all throughout my day, and there they are waiting. Maybe give it a try, even if it feels a little cheesy? You might just make yourself smile a bit more this week.