The smartphone was one of man’s greatest inventions. It saves lives, helps you calculate how much change you need to get back at the grocery store, and lets you call anyone in the world, no matter where they are. Unfortunately, though, we all tend to spend more time than we’d like to on our phones.
Smartphone addiction is a real thing. While it would be easy to stop using your phone beyond your daily needs, doing so is more challenging than you’d think. So, we’ve come up with a list of 4 ways to stop using your phone less often than you usually would.
1. Have a look at the amount of time you’re spending on your phone, then set a new goal.
Listen, we get it. Acknowledging that you spend several hours on your phone every day is hard, and you may not want to see those numbers in black and white. However, if you’re going to change your relationship with your phone, you need to start here. Some apps show you how much time you spend per day on your phone, or you could just go to your phone’s setting and have a look over there.
Once you see the number in writing, you might be alarmed at first, but this is normal, so don’t worry. After you’ve seen the number, you’ll have an idea of how many hours you’d rather spend on your phone instead. For example, you might spend six hours a day on your phone, so you could start by bringing this number down to three.
Acknowledge the amount of time spent, and then set a realistic goal for yourself that allows you to make a change.
2. Establish what kind of relationship you want to have with your phone.
For some people, their smartphone is merely a professional instrument. Once they’re off the clock, they don’t want to have anything more to do with their phone. On the other hand, some people whose time for rest and relaxation comes from using their phones. The two examples we’ve listed here talk about very different kinds of people with varied relationships with their phones.
If you want to make a change, identify what kind of relationship you want to have with your phone. Are you going to maintain a balance between professional and relaxation, or use it for one and not the other? Is the relationship you have with your phone healthy or not? Ask yourself these questions and decide what you want it to be.
3. Find other ways to fill your time.
Picture this: you’re scrolling through social media, and you see a video of something trying out pottery for the first time. You think about how much you’ve always wished to try but never have, and then you move on to watching another video.
If you’re trying to use your phone less, why don’t you try out an activity that you’ve wanted to do for a long time but never did? Not only will you stop using your phone less, but you’ll try something new instead of just watching it happen from behind a screen!
4. Don’t use your phone in bed.
We know, we know. This one is particularly hard not to do, especially since many of us have a plug point right next to our beds, so the temptation to use the phone before falling is higher than ever.
Thankfully, all you have to do is try! Instead of playing Candy Crush or scrolling through Instagram until 1 in the morning, try reading a book or meditating before bed. There are numerous studies that show how using your phone in the dark is bad for your eyes and sleep cycle, but in addition to that, it’s not the best tool to choose to put yourself to sleep.
Find other calming activities to try, such as an evening run or workout that will naturally tire your body out, or a good book to read! You could even take this challenge one step further and stop yourself from reading too much and reward yourself with a few new chapters the next day.
Either way, try to minimize or stop how much you use your phone in bed.
The smartphone is man’s greatest enemy and his best friend. In the 21st century, it’s difficult to separate yourself from your smartphone, but if you’re looking for ways to try, you can always pick one of the methods listed above and see if it makes a difference in your life.