Changing my phone habits

I’m taking some well-earned time off in August and one thing I’ve felt drawn to do is spend some time offline. I spend a lot of time connected to the online world, which is fantastic for the work I do, for the learning and development I seek, and for keeping in touch with family and friends all over the world. My smartphone is by my side or in my pocket (or bag as it’s huge!) all the time. It’s amazing.

And it’s disruptive. I often resort to picking my phone up to fill time (that doesn’t need to be filled) and I tend to use it as my default activity when sometimes if I was choosing logically I’d much rather read, or blog, or do something creative. I’d therefore been planning to take some time offline this month when I discovered an Audible book in a 2 for 1 deal that I thought I’d try: How To Break Up With Your Phone.

After an insightful introduction to challenge your habits and help motivate you to change your phone habits (which to be fair, if you’re listening to the book you’re probably already on board with so don’t need too much convincing!), the book then takes you through a 30 day programme to help you examine and adjust your phone habits.

I’m starting today (though got a bit of a head start as I began the book at the weekend). I’ve jotted down the activity for each of the 30 days in my bullet journal, and will be ticking them off as I go. We’re moving house in a couple of weeks so I may not be able to stick to every day for 30 consecutive days but I intend to if I can. I’m also journalling as I go, though ironically I’m doing this on my phone at the moment as that way I know I’ll have a record kept digitally. 

If you’d like to join me in this, and you haven’t yet tried Audible, please do let me know (feel free to email me or add a comment below) as I can send a free book to anyone who is new to Audible. 

I’m really looking forward to challenging my habits and making some positive changes. My phone is an incredibly valuable tool so I won’t be giving it up altogether (though part of the programme involves a weekend without it which could be a huge challenge for me!). I’m definitely looking to adopt some better habits to enable me to spend more time doing the things I love and less time mindlessly scrolling on my phone. I’m sure I’ll let you know how I get on 🙂 

EDIT: Interestingly, since publishing this post I’ve noticed iOS updates will soon include the ability to track how long you spend on apps and set limits for certain apps, and Instagram are also adding a similar feature. Positive developments based on the research which shows we dramatically underestimate how long we spend on our phones. 

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