Updated: Sep 13
-Declutter Your Digital Life: Part I
Wondering how to remain more focused on what is truly important at the moment instead of feeling distracted by too much noise around you? Probably, you are guilty of too checking too many notifications.
Until you break the habit of checking your phone throughout the day, you are missing out on life as it happens. Follow these 5 steps to break away from the digital rat race and become more interested in real life.
1. Stick to a schedule.
In order to wean yourself from the habit of checking your notifications and phone too often, make a schedule. Check your email and social media in fifteen or thirty-minute intermittent blocks of time spread evenly during the day. Once you improve, increase that time block to forty-five minutes.
In addition, also set a five-minute timer to check and respond to the most important things. If your inbox is full, allot an extra ten- to fifteen minutes to respond to anything that requires your input. Inform your colleagues, friends, and family that you will not be answering their calls and messages as quickly as you did earlier.
Manage your time by scheduling well and following that schedule. You also need to control your online habits for better time management.
Tip: Are you a good time manager? Take the free 'My Time Management Style' Assessment to find out.
2. Be sure to shut off push notifications where possible.
You are not obliged to be bombarded with interruptions from your social media platforms or YouTube channel. Shut off as many push notifications as possible to significantly reduce such distractions. Go even further by shutting off your email and calendar notifications. Notifications are unnecessary if you’re on a schedule for checking email.
3. Remove distracting apps from your phone.
Much of your phone usage comes from unconscious habits. You shift from Instagram to Facebook, then check the weather before turning your attention to your favourite game without thinking much.
Use specific, necessary apps to reduce the amount of time that is wasted on your phone. Delete the apps for social media sites and only use the web browser of your phone or laptop to engage. You will reduce the time spent on your phone.
4. Keep your phone away from your bed.
Your phone does not have to be the last thing you see before going to sleep at night and the first thing you see in the morning. Use an old-school alarm clock instead of your phone to check the time to avoid the time-checking trap on your phone.
5. Use a smart speaker.
A smart speaker helps you live a life away from your phone screen. When you have an intelligent speaker attached to your network via Bluetooth, you will use your phone less to turn on podcasts or music.
The longer the phone is out of your hands, the more productive you are. You may even find your days feel longer without the distraction of notifications.