6 Steps to Break Your Smartphone Addiction
Before we get into it today, I’ve given a few statistics below:
- 36% of Americans admit to constantly checking and using their cellphones
- Generation Xers are more dependent on their phones than Millenials
- In 2017, the average American spent nearly 3 hours per day on their smartphones
That’s a lot of time looking at a small screen…
Here’s some info for you about your cellphone addiction (which yes, you probably have)
- Go online and take the SMARTPHONE COMPULSION TEST. If you score more than a 5, you’re probably addicted. If you’ve got a 15, you’re in big trouble.
- Social media is designed to addict you. Every time you check your likes, or like someone else’s posts, your brain releases dopamine (the best feeling of the feel-good hormones). It’s the same hormone that people on heroin seek.
- Your brain actually adapts and changes the more you use your cellphone. You begin to exhibit symptoms of unfocused distraction. Have you even been to a restaurant and seen two people sitting directly across from one another, looking at their phones the entire time? The brain loses track of time, and social skills deteriorate. Irritability increases too. The brain is designed to have awareness of it’s surroundings. The phone takes that away.
THERE’S A REASON WHY TECH DESIGNERS DON’T ALLOW THEIR KIDS TO HAVE CELLPHONES OR TABLETS!!!
So, how do you work on breaking the addiction? I’ve made 6 suggestions that will help.
- Don’t check your email or social media first thing in the morning. It will activate that dopamine, and you’ll be searching for more all day by checking your phone.
- Disable push notifications. Every time it dings or vibrates, you’ll feel the urge to check it. Guess what, it really isn’t that important!
- Set and stick to specific limits on WHERE and WHEN you will use your phone. Perhaps you agree to only use it in the foyer of the home, and prohibit phone use after 8pm.
- Set a good example for your spouse and your kids. Put your phone in a box away from the dinner table, set tech-free time for your family. Remember, your kids will copy your behavior. If you want a house where no one speaks to one another because they’re all hooked up to their devices, then keep on the phone. Otherwise, put it away!
- Use a screentime tracking app. If you’re spending more that 20-30 minutes of your day on social media, it might be time to put the phone away for a while.
- Go on a phone Fast! Just like learning how to intermittent fast, start small, with just a few hours at a time. Work up to longer and longer periods. Days even. You’ll re-connect with the world around you.
Yes, our phones are great tools that give us access to information and make communication with one another easier than it’s ever been. But, they can also trap us in a hyperconnected world. Learn to disconnect to reconnect with the world around you!
It won’t be easy, but it’s very necessary.
I’m here to help,