Whether it’s alphabetising our apps, or leaving notifications to run riot, we all have our distinct ways of managing our phone’s home screen. But with 2020’s iOS updates introducing the iPhone Widgets, personalising our home screens has been taken to a whole new level.
Our tech experts, working with Business Psychologist, Sonya Dineva, have shared five steps for a home screen makeover according to your personality:
1. Choose a colour scheme
Sonya mentions that people who colour code their apps are often highly organised and have a need for order and structure in their lives. Although there is more to simply choosing a colour scheme than meets the eye – each colour has its own specific connotations.
Blue is often associated with calm and allows you to carry on looking at your phone without getting distracted; hence why many social media platforms use blue colour themes. If you’re particularly busy during the day and jumping through many different tasks, a blue colour scheme can provide a calming respite.
Other colours schemes include yellow which is often symbolic of joy and happiness, and green which can be reflective of health and nature. Take some time to research what various colours symbolise and try incorporating ones into your home screen design that fit you.
2. Select an appropriate background
Although there are plenty of pre-installed backgrounds on smartphones, selecting one that has more of a personal connection to you can have a number of benefits.
Selecting a photo of you and your friends having fun, or a family pet that you don’t see often, can bring happy memories every time you open your phone or a notification pops up.
Equally, you could select a favourite piece of art if you’re a creative person and want little bursts of inspiration when you open your phone, or you could choose something like a serene photo of nature or the sea to give a calming effect.
Whichever avenue you go down, selecting something that makes you feel a positive emotion when picking up your phone is often better than a stock image.
3. Use widgets
This one is certainly relevant to the iOS 14 update as full widget customisation became a feature. This allows you to completely revamp those formerly uniform, rounded-square apps to custom sized windows of the apps and information you want the most.
If you use your phone calendar to plan out your days, perhaps you want to make your calendar app a main feature of your home screen, showing your upcoming appointments. Equally, you may want to have your to do list front and centre to remind you to check off all your daily tasks. Whatever it is that you use your phone most for, you can create widgets to maximise how effective you are with it.
4. Opt for shortcuts
This one is only relevant to iPhone users for now, but the Shortcuts app is a great way to make sure all your most used apps are arranged front and centre on your home screen, making them easy to find and open. The app should already be installed on your iPhone, but if not, simply re-download it from the App Store.
Once in Shortcuts, press the + in the top right corner, now navigate to Add Action > Actions > Choose. From here, choose your app.
Once the app has been added to the Shortcut list, press the three dots next to the app to select add to home screen, this will reposition the app to be at the forefront of your device. While in the Shortcuts app, you can also edit the display photo of your app, opening up endless possibilities for creating your own style or colour theme.
5. Hide unused apps
Just as you would tend to remove unused items and clutter from your home, another important bit of home screen housekeeping is to hide your unused apps. This is a simple process that can tidy up your phone, making it easier to find the apps you do need to use.
Sonya adds: *“People who like to organise their apps like this usually have an elevated need for control. They need order and structure in their lives, predictability and plans to deal with daily stressors.
“They may also be perfectionists who fear failure and tend to worry too much about the future. They are pragmatic, have good time management skills and would make decisions only after careful thinking.”*
Tap and hold on the app you want to remove until a pop-up box appears, now tap on Remove App, then Move to App Library. This will remove the app from your home screen and place it within the App Library, retaining all your data and information associated with the app. Repeat this as many times as needed for your unused apps. To restore the app, simply go to the App Library.
For Android users, simply press and hold the app and select Remove from Home.
If you really don’t use the app at all, consider deleting it, this will also free up some extra storage space on your phone.
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