Alright, alright. I’ll confess: I’m the worst at powering down at night. I have two levels that I operate on…. 100 mph or 0. I run around like a chicken with my head cut off during the day and by the time both kids are down for the night I’m BEAT. I don’t want to clean up the toys or do the dishes. I just want to have time for myself and unwind. So what I end up doing is plopping down on the nearest flat surface and scrolling on my phone for an eternity. Usually up to the point where my eyes are burning and I’m trying to figure out what year it is when I finally put the damn phone down. It’s the worst!!
If you have kids then you can perhaps relate to the notion that social media is a way to feel connected with other adults. But lets be real- what is the likelihood that a genuine connection is going to be formed? Obviously there are substantial benefits to using social media, but when it comes to mindlessly scrolling on a device, I’d say it’s a waste of energy. I know that I’m a happier, more grounded version of myself when I spend time with the people I’m with, rather than the people I’m scrolling past. With that in mind, I've decided to break up with my phone. It's distracted me one too many times from living my life and being in the moment.
This is how I'm going to break up with that dirty rotten phone, once and for all.
1. Be intentional about how I use my 'free' time. Do I want to consume information on my phone or would I rather exercise, read a book, or do anything else that I know will lift me up?
2. Have a home base for the phone. Instead of carrying it around in my back pocket all day, I'm going to leave it on its charger in the kitchen. We need our space.
3. Set time notifications on my phone for using social media apps. I have it set now for a max of 30 mins/ day.
4. We rarely bring our phones to the dinner table when we eat together as a family, but when I'm on my own (ex. at a mall or snacking at night) I always whip out my phone to occupy me while I eat. How silly is that? I'm missing out on the goodness of my food by paying attention to whatever it is I'm looking at on the screen.
5. No technology after 8:00 PM. Except for watching The Bachelor every Monday.
6. Stop using technology as a way to numb or distract myself from what I'm feeling. This is my biggest problem, I think. As I mentioned earlier, I always waste time in the evenings being on my phone- mainly because I'm so exhausted and want to escape from the circus that is my household (the best, most entertaining circus that is). Instead of reaching for my phone when the kids are finally down, I'm going to sit and think about the energy that I have. Am I pooped? Am I frazzled? Am I happy? Why? Is there anything I can do tomorrow to feel differently?
Hopefully this breakup will free up space in my mind to focus on things that matter: my family, my health, and all of the other incredible things that I have been blessed with.
If you want to be more mindful of your relationship with your phone then I invite you to try out this little experiment! No technology after 8:00 pm for a week :) . If it makes a difference in how you’re feeling, awesome! If not, well… at least you gave your eyes a break from staring at a screen!
Here are a couple of articles that offer tips on how to breakup with your phone: