Last week we began to look at the issue of social media and its race for our attention. We discussed the business model most of them utilize – getting your attention as often as possible and then keeping it as long as possible.
One of the ways that they do this is with attractive and bright colors. The screens on your phones are amazing as they display millions of colors with crystal-clear clarity. The colors are attractive and draw your attention and your brain enjoys the experience. Along with the attractiveness, certain colors will create responses in your brain. The color red grabs your attention, and if that is tied to a desired action the company wants from you, it can be a very effective tool to get you to look at your phone. Remember, their goal is to grab your attention and keep it and the use of colors is a very effective tool in their arsenal.
Fortunately, there is a way to combat the powerful impact the colors have on your brain and it is referred to as “going grey”. Most people do not know this but your phone (and other devices) has the ability to view in greyscale, which then removes the power of the colors on your brain. You still see everything but the colors do not attract and influence your brain as much. This can be done on the iPhone/iPhone/iTouch, as well as Android/Samsung phones:
It is also possible with these devices to make going back to color a simple step with your home button so that if there is a picture or video you need to see in color you can switch back and forth quickly. With the iPhone it is under general>accessibility>accessibility shortcut>color filters. With the android phone it is Settings -> Personal -> Accessibility -> Direct Access and turn both Direct Access and Greyscale ON. Once you do this with your phone, a triple tap of the home button will toggle greyscale on and off.
I would encourage you to try going grey for a day or two and see what type of impact it has on how many times you look at your phone and how long you stay glued to it. For some people this simple step has been a very positive move for them in decreasing the amount of time spent on their phone or personal device. Give it a try and maybe you will decide to go grey for good.