How often are you enjoying dinner with a friend, a family gathering or an important conversation at work when you hear your phone make that familiar trill and look down, instantly distracted by that small digital device we tend to carry everywhere with us these days?
I used to be terrible for it, and honestly, I still have a long way to go. Yet I am taking small step towards moving away from that enchanting glow of my mobile screen.
Now rather than having notifications enabled for the majority of apps on my phone, I check them at set times throughout the day. Quite often I will look in the morning, on my lunch break and after work. I try to never look before bed as I find the glare messes with my sleep.
At first I genuinely felt a bit of anxiety, what if I missed an important message? What if something amazing happened and I missed it? But then I realised after two days of having no notifications and the world not crumbling down, the stuff online wasn’t a top priority anymore.
Yes I like using social media to share my work, travelling adventures and writing. However I no longer depend on the buzz of my phone to feel that my work is being endorsed, well received or liked. I write for me, and it’s the best feeling.
I challenge you to turn off at least three apps’ notifications today, and if you survive through to tomorrow, three more.
I now only get text message notifications and calls, and honestly, I have never felt more productive, less distracted, and less anxious. It worries me that my phone dependence could have actually caused them feelings in the first place.