Most everyone with a smartphone will likely admit that they spend too much time each day looking at it. Not surprising as they are designed precisely for you to development an addiction. How many times have you received an alert and reached for your phone, only to notice something else? That thing catches your attention and, the next thing you know, you’ve spent 15 minutes looking at it and other related postings.
Social media is a wonderful way to catch up and stay connected, but it is also rather insidious in the way it encourages us to keep coming back. Have you ever posted a picture or video, and then relentlessly checked back to see how many people have clicked “like”? If you put something up that is widely shared and enjoyed, it provides a sense of validation and attention. Put simply, it helps you to feel good and some days, we really can use that.
So, how much is too much? This varies from person-to-person because our levels of responsibility do. However, if your phone use is preventing you from getting work done, encouraging you to tune out of conversations, and causing you to use your phone at inappropriate times (please don’t use it in movie theatres so you will be one less person I have to yell at), then it is a problem. Are you getting in trouble at work over your phone use? If so, is your Facebook feed really worth losing your job?
The best way to lessen your phone use is to put it away at set times of the day. Think about at least four times during the day when you can put it aside for an hour at a time. Once you are used to this, expand the number of “call free” times you plan for each day.