Virtual program offered by Mayo invites people to put down their phones

Published 7:51 am Thursday, May 16, 2019

Summer is almost here and Mayo Clinic Health System is hoping you don’t miss out on the fun and beauty happening all around you.

Join Mayo Clinic Health System for a free virtual program called “Slim Your Screen Time.”

The eight-week program runs from June 1 to July 31, and is designed to help participants improve well-being by reducing screen time through playing, exploring and connecting. The goal is to complete 30 or more activities over the course of two months.

Choose from over 100 ideas and complete them when it works best. Record completed activities on the game board for a fun way to track progress. Evaluate the program to receive a small participation prize via U.S. mail for each person in the group.

Choose to participate individually, or with family, friends or as a group. The program is open to all ages. Consider involving youth in this program.

“While most people recognize that good nutrition and physical activity are good for our health, the importance of social connections cannot be understated,” said Sara Carsten, director of Community Engagement and Wellness at Mayo Clinic Health System through a press release. “Relationships are just as important to our health as diet and exercise. Along with other chronic conditions, such as high blood pressure, research reinforces that quality face-to-face social connection is critical to mental health for all ages. Developing meaningful relationships can help reduce symptoms of loneliness, depression and anxiety, and help people find meaning and happiness.”

According to Common Sense Media, daily online use for teens is nine hours and six hours for children ages 8 to 12.

Go to mayoclinichealthsystem.org/screentime to learn more, register, print a game board and find program activities by May 29. Expect a few emails along the way to provide direction and help stay motivated.