I grabbed the handle of my luggage and braced it to lift it, but couldn't. After six hours of torture in the form of uninterrupted telephone use, my hands asked for a break. If the epitome of a thousand-year alarm clock existed, it was.
I have long known that I (and many people) spend too much time on the phone – and probably not for any good reason. Somehow it's never enough to check out your inbox or swipe through Instagram in minutes. "Just checking something real quick" often becomes a 30-minute dopamine party with beautiful pictures, double cranes and swipes that somehow make me feel productive when I'm not.
A study from 201
And, wow, I feel better.
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Why couldn't I put my phone down?
Researchers do not definitely know why smartphones are so addictive, but they have some ideas. It can be the phone itself, as the satisfying feeling of unlocking or tapping the screen. There may also be feedback loops created by apps like Facebook and Instagram. (Something says it's mostly later, but after using the techniques below, I think it's both.)
A former Google product manager called the smartphone a slot machine that exploits how all our brains work: We request dopamine happiness molecule) , and our phones give it. Product designers, he said in an interview with 60 minutes, to design products that exploit this vulnerability and get us connected.
It's really that simple: We are all Pavlov's dogs.
What's wrong with smart phone abuse?
In addition to the repetitive stress feeling I experienced in my hand, the effects of telephone failure are mostly psychological.
Anxiety and telephone usage continue to correlate in studies, showing that those who spend a lot of time on their phones tend to be anxious, depressed, or low-self-esteem. But just as we do not know if it is the phone itself or apps that are so addictive, we do not know whether people who are already concerned spend excessive time on their phones or vice versa.
Phone (and app) abuse is so problematic that a lot of unfortunate but motivated terminologies have been created to describe some of its symptoms:
- Nomophobia . Yep, "No-Mobile-Phobia." It is the fear of being without your device.
- FOMO . Fear of missing.
- Ringxiety . Pictured rings or vibrations that result in you often checking your phone.
- Textiety . Anxiety associated with feeling that you have to respond to a text message ASAP.
How I cut my screen time down to an hour a day
If I can do that, then you can. After implementing these techniques, I cut more than three hours of phone screen time per day. It was extremely difficult and I sometimes exceed one hour, but I feel so much better.
I generally feel less anxious, but I feel really good about giving nonphone tasks (like talking to other people) my undivided attention (which is hard to do when you always reach your phone). Here's what I did.
Make your phone gray scale
Without all these colors, apps like Instagram, Facebook, Snapchat and even news programs are much less interesting. This is a fantastic little trick that worked wonders for me. On an iPhone ($ 1000 on Amazon) go to Settings> Accessibility> Show Accommodation> Color Filter. Turn on this setting.
Then go to Settings> Accessibility> Accessibility Shortcut and select Color Filter. Now, for the rare times you need to see your screen in color, you can triple click on the phone's side button. To go back to grayscale, triple click again.
Disable "Raise to wake up"
All that is required is a small nudge and your phone's screen lights up. In the car or on my desk, I noticed that these wake-up calls would start me in long, unplanned phone sessions. Disabling the feature means that the phone will show you much less.
To disable raising to wake up on iPhone, go to Settings> Display & Brightness. Switch raise to wake up to shutdown.
Turn off almost all registrations
This trick is amazing. First, you instinctively open your phone to see if you missed any notifications. Then, when the days go, your locks become less frequent, as you find that there is nothing waiting for you.
I disabled email notifications (except from key people, like my direct comrades and manager), messages, and Google Calendar. That's all.
Remove social media apps
No, I'm not kidding. Yes I am serious. No, you won't die without Facebook.
and never looked back. I felt almost instantly, and I think you will also come.
Clearly, I haven't deleted Instagram. Instead, I useto limit how much time per day I can spend on social media, including Instagram.
Stop pooping with your phone
Humanity survived millennia without a bathroom companion, and I think you will live as well. Taking your phone with you to go second is not just gross; it's also a lamb excuse to spend more time checking points, sweeping social media or playing games.
Depending on how long you, ahem, spend in the bathroom, this can significantly reduce your screen time.
Discipline your (and your friends) Googling habits
My friends seriously hate me for this, but also love me for it (I think). Next time you are debating a factoid over dinner with friends, stop yourself and everyone else from taking a phone to google it.
If you never find out what the state bird in Nebraska is, who cares? In return, the lively conversation continued and was not stopped by a definite fact that no one will remember anyway.
Stop taking so many pictures
Just as over-googling prevents your brain from retaining information, photography prevents your brain from forming real memories. In three studies, people who have not taken photos during an experience have had much more detailed memories than those who did.
If it is not enough to leave the phone in my pocket, I do not know what is.
Leave your phone behind
On weekends, it takes me a long time – sometimes hours – to respond to messages. That's because my phone is rarely with me. At lunch or on hike I leave my phone behind and spend more time "living in the moment" and away from my screen.
Do not use the phone as your alarm clock
One minute you set the morning alarm and the next 30 minutes you are in other apps.helps reduce screen time, but can also reduce some anxiety. A new study found that those who slept near their phones were twice as likely to report nomophobia as well.
Use a smartwatch or tracker
My biggest challenge for phone collection was what I call the "rabbit hole". I would get a notification – even a text message – and suddenly I'm in the rabbit hole, checking other apps and spending many minutes on my phone.
In some cases, adding another technique to the mix may prevent this. By using a smartwatch or fitness tracker with messaging features, you can control the time and receive important messages without falling into the rabbit hole.
The big asterisk here is that smartwatch messages can easily get out of hand, so you have to be very disciplined about capping the type of messages you get on your wrist.
Let your friends and family know
As with any goal, so your friends and family know you are traveling to reduce screen time, you will be honest.
The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended for health or medical care. Always consult a physician or other qualified healthcare professional regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health goal.