|

7 Healthy Phone Habits to Make Life Better

Last week, I picked up a book at the library called How to Break Up with Your Phone.  I had heard lots of good things about it, so I wanted to check it out, and I’m so glad I did!

Reading this book made me want to share some healthy phone habits with you because I think, in this day and age, nearly everyone is way too connected to their phone.

As I’ve learned in this book, our phones and other mobile technology devices are re-wiring our brains – and not in a good way.  They’re affecting our attention spans, feelings, and so much more.  Our brains were not created to take in as much information as they are today.

This is why I want to share how you can learn to use your phone in a healthy way; it is possible!! 

A few years ago, I made some changes in the way I used my phone, especially social media apps, and it has made a huge difference in my screen time and the way that technology makes me feel.

Of course, I’m not perfect, and there is always room to improve, which is why I will not only be sharing my personal healthy phone habits but also tips from other resources (such as How to Break Up with Your Phone)!

If you’re ready to improve the relationship you have with your phone, and therefore improve your life, you’ve come to the right place!

7 healthy phone habits to make life better

healthy phone habits

Turn off your notifications

*GASP*  Turning off notifications?!

But how will I know when my friend texts, when I get a comment on my Instagram post, or when my favorite game reminds me I haven’t played in a while?

Relax… I’m not saying you have to turn off all the notifications on your phone, but you could probably do without most of them.

Instead, go through your settings and turn notifications off for all the apps that you truly don’t need to be seeing things from.

You may need to keep your email and text notifications on for work or school purposes, but what you probably don’t need is notifications from apps such as social media platforms or games.

A few years ago, I turned off my notifications for all my social media apps, and I have never looked back.

Not getting notifications whenever someone likes a post or sends me a message has cleared up a ton of my mental space, leaving me way less stressed.

It’s also saved me from checking my phone every single time I hear that “buzz,” which means that if I’m doing something away from my phone, I can stay focused on that task.

In short, turning off certain apps’ notifications has helped me increase my productivity, decrease my stress levels, and improve my overall quality of life.

Charge your phone out of reach at night 

I have been doing this on and off for a few years, but I recently started up again, and it has been an absolute GAME-CHANGER.

By charging my phone out of arms’ reach, such as in the kitchen, bathroom, or living area, I am not spending my first few waking moments staring at a screen.

When I reach for my phone right after waking up, I often end up spending much more time than I intended to scrolling social media, looking up random things, and just going down random Internet rabbit holes that, to put in blatantly, are a waste of my time.

When I allow myself to wake up slowly, get out of bed and ready for the day all before reaching for my phone, I feel so much better.  I feel more productive, more energized, and just more myself.

If you’re used to having your phone charge right next to your bed every night, trying this might be a little anxiety-inducing at first, and that’s totally normal (unfortunately).  But if you recognize that feeling anxious about your phone being in another room is not healthy, you will be much more willing to get comfortable being uncomfortable.

And trust me, you’ll be so glad you did!

Set a reasonable screen time limit

I know the screen time limit feature on iPhones doesn’t work for everyone, but I thought I would add it to this list of healthy phone habits because it can be a very valuable tool (when used correctly)!

The keyword here is reasonable.  This means reasonable for you, not someone else.  Not everyone’s screen time goals are going to be the same because everyone uses their phones for different things.

For example, if your job has to do with social media, setting a screen time limit for 30 minutes is probably not very reasonable.  

In addition, it’s going to be a lot harder for you to decrease your screen time from 3 hours a day to 30 minutes a day at first.  Instead, try going from 3 hours to 2 hours, then down to 1 hour, and then 30 minutes.  Don’t try to do too much at once; that’s a huge reason why people don’t meet their goals and then get discouraged to ever try again.

And remember, you don’t have to set a screen time limit on all apps!!  If your main goal is to decrease the time you spend on social media or streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, you only need to set limits on those apps.  But if you want to only spend x amount of time on your phone (no matter that apps you’re using), then setting a general time limit is great!

Again, you do what’s best for you! ((:

smartphones

detox your home screen

Ever feel like you just look at your phone and suddenly you’re stressed for no reason?  Yeah, me too.

Our phones are so incredibly stimulating that it can sometimes become overwhelming.

Similar to how I always say that if your environment is messy, your mind will be too… that goes for your phone as well.

If your home screen is a jumble of a ton of apps, some that you use daily and others that you haven’t touched since you downloaded them, then it’s going to be easy to become overwhelmed just by being on your phone.

So clear out the apps that you don’t use (or don’t need), delete those spam text messages that are a year old, and declutter your camera roll (I need to work on that one).

Set your favorite quote or a cute picture as your wallpaper, and make your home screen easy to use.  Organize your apps and keep them in places that make sense.  

Make your home screen a place where you can go without getting overwhelmed!

Don’t touch your phone right before going to bed

I’m sure you’ve all heard this before, as it’s a very popular item on everyone’s list of healthy phone habits, but there’s a reason for that!!

Not only does the blue light that’s emitted from phones, TVs, and laptops mess with our internal clock and ruin our sleep, but these devices are also great at stirring the pot that is our brains.

There is so much information that we consume when using our phones – global news, what our friends are up to, random videos, controversial opinions – and if we’re taking all that in right before we lay down to go to sleep, why do we expect to sleep well?

Before you fall asleep, your brain is going to want to process all that information, which causes you to toss and turn all night.

So instead of consuming content from all over the world right before we try to catch some z’s, why don’t we try to live in the present moment and slowly wind down before bed?

Read a book, have a friend over for dinner, go for a walk, take a hot bath, stretch… do whatever makes you feel most relaxed and at peace.  And I promise, you’ll sleep a lot better.

Offset a bad habit with a good one

I learned this from How to Break Up with Your Phone, and I loved it so much that I wanted to add it to this list of healthy phone habits!

Too often, I think, when we do something we didn’t want to do (such as going on our phone right before bed) we just say “F*ck it,” and spiral into a whirlwind of our old bad habits.  But instead, we could be offsetting our bad habit with a good one. 

For example, if I stayed up late on my phone one night, instead of throwing all my good habits out the window the next day, I could make an extra point to do better the next day.  Maybe instead of not going on my phone for 1 hour after I wake up that day, I’d make it 2 hours.  

The point is, you don’t have to be perfect.  You will mess up.  But what’s more important than the mistake you made is what you do after it.

Don’t feel bad if you mess up!

Last but certainly not least on this list of healthy phone habits is… don’t beat yourself up if (when) you mess up!

If you choose to try out some of these healthy phone habits (which I hope you do!), it’s very likely that you’re going to make mistakes.  Everyone does; we’re human!

But making yourself feel bad about messing up is basically the worst thing you can do.  

Instead, be forgiving and kind to yourself.  Know that you are doing your best, and this little blip in your progress is not the end of the world.  You are doing so great; you got this! ((:

 

 

I hope you go out into the world and challenge yourself to try at least one of these healthy phone habits today! 

If you want to learn more about improving your relationship with technology, check out these 3 easy ways to improve your relationship with social media.

If you enjoyed this post, please share it with others so that we can all have a better relationship with our phones and mobile devices! ((:

Sharing is caring!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.