The Von Restorff effect

This week's theme is: ⏳ Focus

Mindsets and habits to help manage your time and stay present with whatever you are doing in your digital life.


a trigger to inspire motivation

Author and design manager Scott Riley on the Von Restorff effect’s implications for our attention management:

“The Von Restorff effect is a visual bias theory that suggests that when presented with various similar items, the most different item will be easier to notice and recall… What [this] tells us, above all else, is that it is contrast thats grabs our attention.”

Source: Mindful Design


an approach to gather data

Be curious how many apps use high contrast colours (like red notifications and badges) to draw out attention, and how often you get hypnotised by high definition imagery.


a prompt to inspire change

If 90% of human sense receptors are visual, what would the potential benefits be to your focus and attention if you could tune out eye candy that is unrelated to your current task?


an invitation to disrupt your digital habits

Adjust the settings on your phone so that the display removes all colour. You can do this permanently, or set it to activate at certain times of day.

Try this experiment out with us in our community weekly challenge.

Until next week,

— Jonathan
Founder of Mind over Tech