Let’s talk about your smartphone. The smartphone is an amazing invention and our lives have changed over the past decade because of it. It has helped us stay in touch and informed while we’re on the go. While this can often be a great thing, it also brings certain dangers or problems. One of the biggest problems with smartphones today is that they are a huge distraction. They distract us from family life, at work, and just suck a lot of our time and attention in general.
I’m sure you’ve caught yourself looking at your phone, responding to text, or checking in on social media at moments when you should be paying attention. It’s easy to do because your phone is always there. Once those little alerts start beeping, buzzing, and blinking, it’s almost impossible to not pick up the phone and see what’s going on.
Don’t get me wrong, a smartphone can be great tools. It allows you to communicate with everyone you know no matter where you are, carry your entire mobile library and give you access to the vast knowledge stored on the internet with a few key strokes. I just want you to be aware that they can also steal precious time and productivity from you if you let them.
Lose the Alerts
Let’s start with the alerts. This is probably the biggest reason why our smartphones can be so distracting. Some alerts can be helpful such as those letting us know we have a voice mail or a new text message. Others like the various app, social media, and email alerts, can be more disruptive than helpful. How important is it to know the minute someone comments on one of your Facebook posts or that yet another promotional email hit your inbox? Is it worth the distraction if you’re sitting at your desk working productively on your latest project? Is it worth the distraction if you’re busy reading your children a bedtime story? If the answer is no, it’s time to re-evaluate what apps and programs you have alerts set for.
Too Many Apps
Next, take a look through everything you have installed on your phone. Are those social media apps and games helpful and relaxing? Or are they tempting you to spend time playing around on your phone when you should be working or spending meaningful time with your loved ones? Delete what you don’t need.
Shut It Off
Last but not least, realize that it’s perfectly fine to turn off your phone, or silence it and set it aside at times. You don’t have to be reachable twenty-four hours a day. Make your phone work for you and use it as a tool to increase productivity instead of letting it distract you from what’s truly important.
Your smartphone may be your life lifeline to the world. However, it could also be an anchor pulling you under. There is a fine line between being busy and being productive. In order to find true success, you need to find a balance.