It’s no shocker that our phones have become integral to our lives. From staying in touch with friends and family to working from home, the use of smartphones is unavoidable.
And as phones become more innovative, our use of them keeps growing with no sign of slowing down. While phones can be beneficial, they can also be detrimental if used excessively.
Luckily, there are several steps you can take to reduce your reliance on your phone and use it less overall. From setting specific time limits to establishing a phone-free zone in the home, there are practical – and surprisingly simple – ways to use your phone less.
In this guide, we will take a closer look at 10 steps you can use to use the phone less and for better.
Why Our Phones Are Becoming a Problem
You may not need an explanation of why phones can be a problem, but it’s worth mentioning. Our smartphones have gone from simply being devices to communicate and use apps to all-in-one pocket computers.
For example, we use our phones for gaming, shopping, banking, watching videos – even reading books. In short, our phones have become indispensable tools that we use for practically everything. It’s no wonder we look at our phones more than we’d like.
Here are just a few stats that may shock you into realizing the dangers of relying too much on your phone:
- 74% – The percent of Americans who report feeling “uneasy” leaving their phones behind when they leave home.
- 53% – How many Americans say they’ve never gone 24 hours without looking at their device in the past few years.
- 35% – The number who admit to looking at their smartphone while driving.
- 64% – How many admit to using their phones while using the toilet.
- 48% – The amount of people who report feeling anxious or depressed if their phone batter is low.
If these stats don’t bother you, consider that the same surveys found that 43% of those asked admitted to using their phones while on a date! Not quite the impression you want to make, right?
Why Our Phone Addiction May Be a Problem
The use of our phones has become such an integral part of our lives that it can be hard to control. But, if you use your phone too much, it can lead to serious problems – both mental and physical. Here are just a few of the risks:
– Increased stress and anxiety. Spending too much time on your phone can lead to an increase in stress and anxiety levels. Studies have found that overuse of phones can lead to feelings of loneliness and depression – mainly due to “doom scrolling” or endlessly scrolling through social media.
– Poor sleep quality. Staring at your phone screen too late into the night can lead to a lack of sleep, fatigue, and poor overall health. These can lead to a decrease in productivity, focus, and overall well-being.
– Increased risk of injury. Spending too much time on your phone can lead to neck pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and even vision problems. You may not realize how much using your phone can take a toll on your physical health.
– Reduced productivity. It’s easy to get lost in the endless world of your phone, but it can be detrimental to productivity. Spending too much time on your phone can disrupt work flow, reduce concentration, and use valuable time that could have been used elsewhere.
– Higher risks of predatory use. Finally, using phones can lead to increased risks of cyberstalking and other forms of internet-based crime. Regular use can make you more vulnerable to predators who use the internet for malicious purposes – especially for children or teenagers.
10 Steps to Use Your Phone Less
Now that you know the why, let’s get into the how! Let’s take a closer look at ten strategies to use your phone less.
1. Work With Your Family to Set Time Limits for Smartphones
One of the best ways to use your phone less is to set limits with your family members. If you’re a parent, use parental control apps to establish time limits for when phones can be used. Encourage teens and children to use their phones only during certain hours of the day.
For example, you can set a “phone-free” hour or two before bedtime to ensure that everyone in the family is getting enough sleep. Or you can set a limit on the use of social media apps during study periods.
When you can create a home environment with clear boundaries and limits, you can use your phone less – and use the time to connect with family instead. It may seem challenging at first, but it’s a great way to use your phone less and use the time for other activities.
2. Disable Notifications
One of the main reasons we use our phones too much is because of notifications. Every single time you get a notification from an app, it can be tempting to check it out – even if it’s not essential. In fact, the average person checks their phone nearly 96 times each day! It may not seem like a lot, but it adds up quickly.
To use your phone less, one of the best things you can do is disable notifications from all non-essential apps. That way, when your phone buzzes or beeps, you know that it’s something important – not just another notification from an app.
The easiest way to do this is to use the “Do Not Disturb” feature on your phone. This will silence all notifications and give you more control over when and how you use your phone.
Or, if you need to receive notifications from some apps, you can set specific times when notifications will be allowed or create different permissions within the apps themselves.
3. Establish a “Phone-Free” Zone in the Home
Another great way to use your phone less is to establish a “phone-free” zone in your home. This could be anywhere from the dinner table or living room to your bedroom or office. Having a designated place where phones are not allowed can help you use your phone less and focus on the task at hand.
In addition to setting up physical boundaries, you can also use virtual ones by turning off the wifi or cellular connection in certain areas of your home. That way, even if you have the urge to use your phone, you won’t be able to because there’s no connection.
While it may be easy to overcome this obstacle, it can be a great reminder to use your phone less and use the time for something else.
4. Create a List of Alternative Activities
One of the best ways to use your phone less is to have alternative activities ready. Instead of spending time on your phone, use the time to do something else – like engaging in a hobby or learning a new skill.
Creating a list of activities that you enjoy can be helpful and make it easier for you to use your phone less. For example, add a few books to your list if you like reading. Or if you’re interested in art or photography, set aside some time each day for practice.
Having alternative activities ready can help keep you from using your phone too much and give you something productive to focus on instead. This is especially helpful if you find yourself reaching for your phone without thinking.
5. Go On Screen-Free Days
Lastly, use your phone less by going on screen-free days. This means taking a break from all screens – phones, tablets, computers, and TVs – for a day or two each week. This can help reset your mind and give your eyes a break from the constant use of screens.
Going on screen-free days can also help set limits and encourage you to use your phone less. Without phones, tablets, or computers, it’s easier to focus on other activities and use the time for something else.
It may be hard to do this at first, but setting up an accountability system with a friend or family member can help make the process easier. Over time, you may find that you use your phone less and use the extra time for something else.
6. Give Your Device To A Friend
If you’re really struggling to use your phone less, try giving your device to a friend or family member. This can help force you to use the device less and use the extra time for something else. Plus, having an accountability partner will make it easier to stick with your goals.
Giving someone access to your device also has the added benefit of providing a safety net. If you need to access essential information or use certain features of your phone, you can always ask your friend to use it for you. This can be a great way to use your phone less without sacrificing what you need.
7. Find Support From Others
Finally, use your phone less by finding support from others. Look for people in your life who can motivate and encourage you to use your phone less. This could be a friend, family member, or even a coworker.
Having someone to talk to about your goals can help make the process easier and give you the encouragement and accountability needed to use your phone less.
You can also look for online support groups or forums that are dedicated to using phones less. These communities can be excellent sources of motivation and provide valuable tips on how to use your phone less.
8. Discuss Struggles With Friends and Family
If you’re finding it difficult to use your phone less, don’t be afraid to discuss it with friends and family. Talking about the struggles you face can help identify the areas that need work and provide useful insight on how to use your phone less.
In addition, talking about your struggles can also provide an additional source of support and encouragement.
Having someone to talk to about your goals can help make the process easier, and you may even find yourself using the phone less over time. They may even offer to help you use your phone less by setting limits or providing reminders to use your phone less.
9. Downgrade Your Device
Another great way to use your phone less is by downgrading your device. This means replacing your current device with one that has fewer features and capabilities. By having a device with fewer options, you are likely to use it less and use the extra time for something else.
For example, if you have an iPhone and use it for a lot of different tasks, you could downgrade it to a basic flip phone with fewer features. This can help simplify your use of the device and provide additional motivation to use it less. Not only will this help use the phone less, but it can also save money in the long run.
10. Take Inventory of Your Time
Finally, use your phone less by taking inventory of your time. This means tracking how much time you use your device each day and making an effort to use it less over time. You can also use this data to identify the areas that need improvement and use the extra time for something else.
You can use various tools to track your phone use, such as apps or spreadsheets. This data can be useful in helping you use your phone less over time and use the extra time for other activities. Seeing how much time you use your device each day can be a great source of motivation to use it less.
BONUS! 11. Use a Third-Party App to Lower Phone Use
A third-party app is one effective way to use your phone less. These apps can be great for tracking your phone use and providing helpful reminders about limiting use.
Some of them also include features such as blocking certain apps or websites, setting time limits, and more. This can be a great way to use your phone less without sacrificing the use of essential apps or features.
One effective app for this is Kidslox– which provides users with detailed phone use tracking and helpful reminders about limiting use.
Help Yourself Fight Phone Addiction with Kidslox
These are just ten simple steps that you can use to use your phone less. While it may take some time and effort, adopting these tips can help reduce your reliance on phones and develop healthier habits. So why not get started today? Take the first step towards using your phone less and make a commitment to use fewer devices over time. With dedication and consistency, you can use your phone less and use the extra time for something else.
If you are looking to discover effective ways to avoid using phones too much, check out Kidslox. With Kidslox, you can fight phone addiction and use your device less– giving you the freedom to use it for what’s really important! As an effective control device, Kidslox helps you use your phone less and use the extra time for something else.
Whether you are looking to use your phone less or use it more responsibly, Kidslox is an effective app for helping you use the device in a healthier way. So why not try it out today?
Start using your phone less and take control of your device use. It will make a world of difference! Get started now and use the phone less in your daily life.