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How to make your phone less of a distraction

Can you live without your phone? I believe we have reached a point where we can do without our wallets but not our phones. No doubt our phone serves multiple functions in our life however it can be our greatest distraction as well!

What do you use your phone for? Well I use it to

  • Check emails

  • chat

  • call

  • be social

  • tracking of my finance

  • manage the operations of my business

  • jot down my to do list

  • present slides during trainings

  • stream videos

  • track my fitness goals

  • access my fitness videos

  • take photos

  • take videos

  • banking transactions

  • track my son’s report in school

  • jot down my schedule

  • and the list goes on

Phones have evolved in terms of functionality and portability over the years. From the basic functions to a extended wide range of functions, I need to admit that I have every single data stored in my phone. No doubt my phone has made me more productive but there are moments when I wished that my phone didn’t exist. The ongoing notifications or reminders may serve as a distraction which could drastically affect our productivity level. In order for us to be a master of your time, we need to know when we should put our phone down for a better cause.

Here are 5 tips for you to make your phone less of a distraction to maximise your productivity:

1. Turn notification off when on focus mode

Research has shown that the simple act of acknowledging a message just came through affects our focus even if we do not open up the message to read the contents hence when you know you need to be on focus mode to finish a particular task within this time frame, make sure your phone is far from you! DON’T EVEN ON WHATSAPP ON YOUR DESKTOP! It may be convenient to respond to messages through the keyboard but it is a big no no when it comes to productivity. Trust me, if it is something urgent, it would be a call instead of a text hence text can always wait!

2. Start deleting apps

How many times do you really look through your phone and realise there are applications that don’t serve you anymore but they are still lingering on your desktop? There was a period of time when I was receiving notifications of applications that I don’t even use on my phone and I actually allowed it to show me the notifications because all I need to do was to swipe it off. How long does it take to swipe the notifications off right? Well as months go by and I start to realised I am swiping away too many stuff from my notification list since my applications are increasing. Instead of spending time swiping them off or thinking that you will use the app EVENTUALLY, start by deleting the apps which are untouched for the past 3 months. Chances for you to use the app is really low and well if you ever need it next time, just install it! But for now, time to take them to the bin!

3. No Phone For The First 30–60 Minutes Of Your Day

Temptation to check your phone is real. I won’t deny it. You have probably woken up by the alarm on your phone. Instagram, Facebook or even the news are probably 1-2 taps away. There isn’t a day when I woke up with 0 notifications. Never once. The only day when I woke up with 0 distractions is when my phone battery is flat and I couldn’t turn on my phone at all. So you see the first hour when you wake up sets the tone for your whole day. If you wake up with problems bombarded to you, be sure to know that the entire day will just be full of problems. If you wake up and start your day with a great workout, you know you have an energetic day ahead. If you wake up and start your day with meditation and journal and simply being quiet, you know the calmness in your heart will help you live your day with confidence and peace. What is the tone that you want to set for that day? I know for sure that stress, worries and confusion will never be the tone I want for the day hence I am very protective of what I do when I wake up. If you have not known, I make sure I do my morning pages because it helps me align my goals and evaluate what had happened the day before and even generate new ideas for my business and trainings. You have your phone for the rest of the day, be protective over your mornings and start your day WITHOUT your phone.

4. Don’t always have your phone on you

It is really ok to have your phone away from you even for awhile. Trust me, it is really ok! You don’t need your phone when you go to the washroom. You don’t need your phone when you’re taking your lunch break. I believe it is all in the mindset. Have I stepped out of home without a phone before? Yes I did. Was my day crazy? Not really, I had peace the entire day and I was able to do some deep thoughts thinking. Did my chats explode when I retrieve back my phone? Kind of exploded, some urgent stuff became non urgent anymore, nothing detrimental to my business or life, life still goes on! I am not saying you should totally ditch your phone but be protective of your time and if there are really things that deserve way more of your time. It may be reflecting upon something that happened, evaluating where you are in your relationship, career, your walk with God. It can be simply dreaming or thinking where you want to see yourself in 2 years 5 years 10 years time. Don’t let your phone suck away your soul.

5 .Have strong placement activities

What would I do without my phone in the morning when I wake up? I can do my morning pages with my journal book and pen. I can read my bible as I read it on my physical copy. What would I do without my phone when I commute? I can read books, physical copy or on my kindle, I am fine. Start to establish placement activities to replace your phone activities even for a short duration of 30mins to an hour. With these strong placement activities, you will start to realised that you can actually live without your phone and missing out a few notifications is really fine.

The whole idea of this episode is to ensure that we are not addicted to our phone and start to have cold turkey when the phone is away from us. It should be used as a tool to help us be productive hence be cautious if it steps over the line, making you less focus along the way!

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