We’re consuming online media at an all-time high, and most of it is on our phone. For many, it’s becoming harder to see ourselves without our mini computer in our pockets at all times.
We may feel almost entirely bound to our devices.
Don’t get me wrong, I think the advancement of our cell phones can be incredibly beneficial to our daily lives (and pretty to look at). The problems arise when we start using our phones as an escape from the real world.
According to KPC Internet Trends, we’re currently spending almost 6 hours a day consuming online media, and about half of that time is spent with our faces glued to our phones.
That’s a lot.
If you feel like the amount of time you spend on your phone has become a problem in your daily life, allow me to suggest a few solutions you can take starting today.
Turn Your Notifications Off
Pulling your phone out of your pocket and checking your notifications is like pulling the lever on a slot machine. We’re anticipating a reward. The only difference is; there’s no limit to how many times we can pull this metaphorical lever.
Every time we receive a new buzz, we’re actually getting a hit of dopamine. The problem here is not only are we expecting too much from our notifications, it’s also extremely addictive.
One way to wean off would be to simply turn off your notifications.
Here’s how to do it.
- Go to settings
- Tap on Notifications
- Select an app
- Then switch the Allow Notifications off
The trippy part is that we perform most these actions subconsciously. You probably don’t notice you’ve checked your phone 10 times in the last 2 minutes unless it’s brought to your attention.
You’ll want to be making conscious decisions to check your messages.
Delete Time-Consuming Apps
If you’re feeling bold, try to delete the apps you feel suck up most of your valuable time.
You might suddenly feel a sense of relief, like a burden off of your shoulders, one less app competing for your time. It might feel weird at first, but you’ll survive.
I’ve personally decided to take one whole day away from my phone, every other day. Leaving me with more time to focus on my work and at the same time not completely restricting me from my phone. At least, not forever.
Once the important tasks are taken care of, feel free to check your phone. Everything in moderation.
Keep Your Phone Out of Your Room
Thank me in the morning.
Try keeping your phone in another room, like the guest room or the kitchen. Staying away from your phone for a few hours before hitting the sack allows you to get a better nights rest.
Better rest = Better you.
To avoid feeling like you’re being a complete douche to everyone, try leaving a friendly “Do not disturb” message somewhere.
(This may not apply to everyone, especially if you live alone or have someone that heavily relies on your communication. Don’t worry though, the other four tips should suffice in helping you reduce your phone usage.)
Occupy Yourself with More Productive Activities
Clean up your room, and once you’re done; pick up a book. Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules For life is a good place to start if you’re looking to go that extra mile with self-improvement.
Make it a habit to fill your free time with something that’ll yield some sort of positive return.
For most people, it takes 21 days to form simple habits. Avoiding your phone first thing in the morning may not be for the faint of heart, but it’s worth a shot.
Instead of killing time, invest in it. Simply put, it’s the smarter choice.
Keep to a schedule
An interesting habit that most successful people tend to do is avoid all Emails and messages for the first few hours of the day.
This allows them to focus on the more important areas of life.
If possible, try making a vow to not use your phone until the afternoon.
Just keep in mind; everything in moderation. Reducing the time spent attached to your mobile companion won’t kill you, but it may help revive or build connection in the areas that matter most.