iPad + Depression = Bad Combo (for me)

Discussion in 'iPad' started by CE3, May 15, 2019 at 9:19 AM.

  1. CE3 macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    First of all, I love the iPad. In some ways it’s been the most personal of all the “personal computers” I’ve used. It’s been my favorite device for web browsing, watching videos, checking email, and shopping by a long shot.

    But I think we need to break up. And it’s not the iPad, it’s me.

    As I’m sure most of you already know, iPads aren’t just great devices for consumption, they’re also excellent tools for productivity and creativity. That’s why I bought my first iPad years ago, but that’s not what I’ve ended up using them for 95% of the time.

    As someone who sometimes struggles with depression (and laziness), it’s been too easy for too long to lay in bed with an iPad when I’m feeling lethargic and demotivated, doing all the consumption things I love to do on it and avoiding life in the process. Again, I fully recognize that the iPad isn’t really the problem here, but the ways I’ve chosen to use it over the years..the role I've given it.. has enabled my procrastination and inactivity, and intertwined it with these negative behavior patterns.

    My relationship with my phone, laptop and desktop is much more productivity focused. So while I"m sure I'll miss the iPad, I think it’s time to cut it out of the equation.

    I know this is kind of a strange post, but I wanted to share and was curious if others could relate.
  2. sracer macrumors 604


    Apr 9, 2010
    Self-awareness is a helpful and healthy thing. What you are experiencing and dealing with is pretty common. I've noticed it with many of the "digital natives" that I interact with.

    For us "digital immigrants" (who started life out with little to no computer exposure) we are less susceptible (but not immune) to it.

    The thing to be on the look-out for is if your phone replaces the iPad in that regard.

    Thanks for being transparent. I wish you success in the changes you are making and want to offer any insight/assistance that can be helpful.
  3. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    You got to just make up your mind to only sue your iPad for a certain length of time and that it it!

    Will not be easy at first. Get out and walk, ride a bike, run, go swimming.

    You recognize you have a problem, that is the first step in fixing it!

    Good Luck!
  4. Porco macrumors 68030


    Mar 28, 2005
    They can be quite addictive!

    Maybe try limiting your use of the iPad to certain rooms in your house (exclude the bedroom). If you have the discipline to get rid altogether, you might want to first try limiting it to certain rooms. Or, maybe get a long charging lead and only allow yourself to use it tethered (physically) to the charger. Good luck with whatever you decide.
  5. MisterSavage macrumors 6502a


    Nov 10, 2018
    If you do keep your iPad maybe the ScreenTime feature in settings would help. It would make you aware of how long you've been using the device and lets you schedule downtime.

    That's the first thought I had.
  6. CE3 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    Fortunately, I can’t see myself being glued to a tiny 6” screen the way I can be with an iPad for hours. But I know a lot of people have unhealthy relationships with their smartphones too. I think many of us are still trying to figure out how to find a balance with all this technology (internet and social media) in our lives.

    I use Siri with my watch—it’s the only device where I keep “Hey Siri” enabled since I wear it all the time—and this keeps me from reaching for my phone a lot throughout the day.

    I’m usually at a table or a desk if I’m on my MacBook. And I'll use the MacBook more if the iPad’s gone.

    But whether I keep the iPad or not, I think I should establish a general “No Electronics in Bed” rule (besides my watch).

    Better monitoring and use of the ScreenTime feature would probably be helpful too.

    Thanks for the positive feedback and helpful suggestions everyone.
  7. AutomaticApple macrumors 65816


    Nov 28, 2018
    Set downtime?
  8. Richard8655, May 15, 2019 at 5:59 PM
    Last edited: May 15, 2019 at 7:52 PM

    Richard8655 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 11, 2009
    Your post is right on target. The age of screens has caused many sociological and social problems. We inter-relate less personally with other people and get our social and entertainment needs from a glass flat screen. Easy to spend way too much time there.

    I have to guard against it too quite a bit. As previously mentioned, getting out for physical activity helps hugely not only to keep in shape, but mental state as well. Biking, swimming, walking, hiking, visiting a forest to absorb nature helps me tremendously balance life with an iPad (or iPhone, computer, etc.).
  9. jagolden macrumors 6502a


    Feb 11, 2002
    I’m pleased you are sharing your feelings and thoughts/experiences on this. Good to do instead of keeping it to yourself. You may actually help others with this post.

    Do what you feel is right for you. I also suffer from depression, bipolar II, and other issues. My therapist has suggested setting an alarm for a specific amount of time for using the iPad or computer. The built in one is great for that. Or, she says use the device as a "reward" after getting something accomplished, be it a "simple" as getting up or showering (and those can be overwhelming tasks with depression).
    I fully understand the procrastination thing, totally relate.

    Good luck with however you proceed with this. You’re not alone.
  10. baypharm macrumors 65832


    Nov 15, 2007
    You would be a great candidate for Valerie 23 when it becomes available. I tell patients to get out and volunteer. Helping others is a great way to help yourself.
  11. K1221n macrumors newbie

    Feb 20, 2017
    Agreed, just force yourself to walk a couple miles and get some resistance training every couple days.

  12. subjonas macrumors 68000

    Feb 10, 2014
    I can relate to this. Our devices, especially the iPad which is designed specifically for personal consumption, can contribute to keeping us stuck in an isolated loop, too occupied to see life passing by. Good on you for doing something about it, and for sharing.
  13. s15119 macrumors 68000


    Nov 20, 2010
    Makes sense to me. All the best to you.
  14. Pipper99 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2010
    Fort Worth, TX
  15. CE3, May 20, 2019 at 2:04 PM
    Last edited: May 20, 2019 at 2:11 PM

    CE3 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Nov 26, 2014
    Quick update..

    I haven’t gotten rid of the iPad, but I’ve cut down my usage significantly (i.e. barely used) over the past 5 days. This has been on my mind for a very long time, so I think it really helped to make a declaration here.

    I’m doing a good job of keeping the electronics away from bed at night. I might put a podcast on a sleep timer before getting in bed, but my phone will be charging across the room.

    I enjoy regular physical activity, so I’m pretty healthy in that regard.

    At least part of my depression is triggered by procrastination and letting tasks and deadlines build up to a point where I get so overwhelmed that I don’t want to do anything at all. I know my overall health will improve if I continue to take a more proactive approach to how I deal with stress / anxiety / depression.

    Thanks again for the recommendations and suggestions everyone. It’s nice that MacRumors can be such a supportive community.

    Thanks! It's my next listen!
    Screen Shot 2019-05-17 at 9.53.00 PM.png
  16. Pipper99 macrumors 68020


    Aug 14, 2010
    Fort Worth, TX
    Here’s the podcast where I heard the author discuss his book and philosophy:


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