A necessary practice in my recovery from trauma is setting all notifications on any application and device to their least disruptive state – no sounds, no flags, nothin’. I’ll turn some back on as occasion or convenience demands. Additionally, I block “study hall” when I know I might need to move through more than one platform or portal to connecting with a community or organization.
I was already practicing this by the time I read Aditi Joshi’s Rethinking the Notifications Process, which affirmed a lot of why this was such an effective practice for me. This article focuses on how UX researchers can follow SAHMSA’s trauma-informed approach in design based on the model’s grounding principles:
A program, organization, or system that is trauma-informed realizes the widespread impact of trauma and understands potential paths for recovery; recognizes the signs and symptoms of trauma in clients, families, staff, and others involved with the system; and responds by fully integrating knowledge about trauma into policies, procedures, and practices, and seeks to actively resist re-traumatization.
We’re an active Network: there’s a lot going on – in a lot of different places – all the time. We use a variety of tools for communication and collaboration. They definitely weren’t all designed with a trauma-informed mindset (few are!), which then compounds how hard it is for us to use them when we center that intention ourselves.
I’m curious how others navigate their own relationship to tooling and notifications. For example, I’ve got a complicated relationship with Slack – I enjoy the immediacy I feel of being in the virtual company of others. But I can get lost in conversations pretty easily, especially if one or more of us is trying to explore a complexity at length. Especially if that person is me.
And thus, each new notification of engagement instead becomes a source of stress that clouds my read of what’s happening. I’ve been developing a new ‘rule’ for myself – if I’m about to explore something that might take up several minutes and a lot of real estate on the screen, I should check in with the other person or people to see if we’re all actually comfortable communicating that way. We’ve got access to many other ways and some of those may support our shared needs better – like a quick huddle when possible, or a scheduled Zoom call instead.
Is that relatable for anyone else? Are there other tips or tricks you’ve used to know which comm/collab tool to use when, based on your stress level or the stress of others?