We all know that our smartphone can be one of the greatest sources of distraction in our lives. It often feels like our phone is another appendage. It’s always with us. For this reason, smartphone use can seriously impact our productivity. If you’re struggling with this, then you know that a more disciplined relationship with your phone would be helpful. But what does this discipline look like? Let’s explore some possible techniques to optimize your smartphone use.
Adjust the Blue Light
Blue light is emitted by your phone’s screen. If you spend too much time exposed to it at night, it can induce wakefulness. (This type of light tells your brain it’s daytime.) This can end up interfering with your sleep, which, as we all know, can negatively affect productivity the next day. You need to feel well-rested in order to focus and work to the best of your ability.
For this reason, it’s best to adjust the blue light on your phone. You can do this by going to your display and brightness settings and activating night mode on your phone. (This will reduce the blue light in a timeframe of your choosing.) There are also many blue light filter apps that can do this for you.
Put Your Phone Out of Reach
Another important tip is to not have your phone near you when you’re working or trying to concentrate on something. Of course, you still want to be able to hear your phone vibrating or ringing should you need to take a call, but for the most part, you don’t need to reply to all your WhatsApp messages right away. And it’s certainly not necessary to check for social media updates while you’re in the middle of doing a task.
Make sure you can’t reach your phone when working. Better yet, keep it out of sight and in a difficult to reach place, as this will give you even less of an incentive to check it and really lower your smartphone use frequency. It’s also beneficial to keep your phone out of reach close to your bedtime, as this will stop you from being glued to it all night. Even with reduced blue light, you can still end up using your phone late into the night, which will impact your sleep and harm your productivity.
Check Your Time Spent on Your Phone
You can check the time spent on your phone in your settings. You may be surprised to find out how many hours in a day you are on the phone, how much time you spend using specific apps, and how many times a day you pick up your phone. To be more disciplined with your smartphone use, set a goal of how much of this time you’d like to cut. Be realistic. Don’t aim for half an hour if you already spend three hours a day on your phone. Instead, aim for two hours. On the other hand, you could aim for a big reduction and gradually work toward that over a certain period of time. This is often an effective way to build healthy habits.
By following the above points, you can adopt a more disciplined relationship with your phone and not feel so enslaved to it. This will allow you to focus on the things that truly matter.
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