Put that phone away!


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Last month, I wrote a post on a particular habit that I needed to change. I had promised myself that I would work on it and come back a month later to write about how I had successfully kicked the habit. So, here I am!

I had planned on exercising control over my phone usage and use my time constructively. As I said, habits take a while to change, to become habits. I had given myself a month, and today, I feel so good about myself because, although I haven’t kicked the habit altogether, I have learned to control the urge.

Now, my phone stays away from me in the mornings, till I finish my workout and my chores. I reach for it only after I have had my breakfast. I scroll through the messages and the news feed on Fb and Instagram. But then, I remind myself after about 15 minutes that my time is up. That there is work to be done, articles to be written, so put that thing away!

The Wi-Fi stays on, but the phone stays away. The rest of the day, too, I pick up the phone for a while, but I have observed that after some time, I tire of gazing into the phone and put it away sooner than I used to.

Most evenings, the Wi-Fi is switched off and some days, I just leave it like that. There isn’t much to see in there, anyway, and surely, the world isn’t going to change in the time I stay away from it all! And, if someone does need to get in touch with me, they can call me up. People to whom I matter know how to get in touch with me; they don’t need to reach out through a social media platform.

The peace I experience at such times is unbelievable and inexplicable. It also helps that I have a couple of good books that whisk me away from the madness that is social media. Also, the need to make better use of my time keeps me on my toes all day. My to-do list has quite a many items that need to be ticked off before the end of the day.

it is, indeed, satisfying seeing all those tasks accomplished, and, it is this contentment that propels me to keep working harder and stay away from the “distractions”.

Of course, there are days when nothing around seems to interest me and that is when the phone stays with me for longer. But, the need to keep my promise to myself is stronger than the need to entertain a bored and an idle mind. For such days, I use Netflix and watch a good movie–my TV viewing is 2 on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 being the least amount of time I spend watching the idiot box.

I had ended my post on a positive note, with hope and promise that I would, indeed, work on my habit. Maybe that is the reason I could put my heart into it. The responsibility I have towards myself made me work on it, seriously.

Being responsible for our actions is what makes the difference in our attitude. My father used to say that we need to be true to ourselves and everything will fall into place. Those words echoed in my mind each time I reached for the phone earlier in the past month. As a child, I hardly could fathom the meaning behind those words; it is now, as I work on myself, that I understand what they stand for.

The struggle to stay away from the gadget can’t be called a “struggle” today. In fact, on some days, I consider the phone to be the most uninteresting piece of invention by man and reach for my book!

Just writing these words gives me a feeling of utmost satisfaction. Feels really good to realise I care for myself more than stuff–unnecessary stuff. Glad to tick off another item on my list of ‘Things to do to love yourself’!

Love,

SHILPA…

P.S.

Just so you know, the amount of time you spend looking at your phone today, is half the amount of time you will be spending at your ophthalmologist. Also, you have just this pair of eyes to use in this life time.

SHILPA…

I came across these 10 simple ways to break bad habits. Do try and follow these. I am sure you will find a difference in yourself some day soon.

Easy ways to change old habits.

34 Replies to “Put that phone away!”

  1. Good on you for being able to make that change! Apple with their latest update, now lets you know how much screen time you are using up and what you’re using it on. It’s been interesting this past week to see how much time I spend on the phone. I do listen to a lot of music through my phone and definitely use it for working out, I also read a lot of articles on it. But yes, Instagram is probably my biggest downfall {I don’t have FB on my phone} so I’ve got to make a mindful effort to reduce my usage. It’s not too bad when I’m at work thankfully!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I used to mindlessly scroll through Fb news feed until last month and waste precious time and energy. I am thankfully not addicted to Instagram, although it is much more attractive than FB. But, I really needed to make this change, Sanch, as everywhere I see people with their eyes glued to their phones. I didn’t want to be that person, so, I decided that enough was enough! πŸ™‚

      Like

  2. I totally agree with you. Touch phones are a type of addiction. I tried hard to stay away from it.Last year i left Instagram and this year again came back.
    So my husband gifted me a Nokia 3311 phone which does not have any kind of activity .but i m happy with his suggestion. now i do use my iPhone for sometime just to read insta,Facebook and gmail.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I read in a friend’s post that if we use our phones for the purpose of verbal communication and nothing else, we will be leading much more peaceful lives!

      We really need to put down that smartphone before it makes us completely stupid!

      Thank you for visiting, Sonam! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I had read your post about using your phone from 9 to 9, Shilpa, and had decided to take up the challenge.
    I just couldn’t do it.
    However , reading your post has given me a another push, and I am going to give it a go once again.
    Thanks for sharing this post, it is truly inspiring.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It does feel good, Mayuri, when I realise that I am no longer at the mercy of my phone! πŸ™‚ It is tough, no doubt, what with all the notifications pinging and seeking our attention, but once I realised the amount of work that I could complete in all that time, it inspired me to make it a habit.

      I am sure you will be able to do it, Mayuri. After all, you did win the challenge against Sugar!! That was one motivating post that often came to my mind in the past month as I fought to stay away from my phone. Both these are, after all, addictions and if we can fight one, then we can definitely fight the other!

      Wish you the best! πŸ™‚

      Like

  4. Kudos Shilpa. I see couples in restaurants sitting staring at their phones or kids glued to theirs. And I feel really sorry for them. I have phases when I’m totally hooked and then I let it go for a while and then I’m hooked again. I’ve learnt to keep a book handy to fill in the little gaps of free time I have

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I see that, too, Tulika! And, I feel how sad it is that the couples would much rather communicate with someone sitting miles away and knows nothing about them, than their partners who have been with them for so many years.

      These smartphones have really ruined everything-families, relationships and even our power to understand right from wrong.

      Like

  5. I call it the digital heroin. An addiction that promises to kill our society and generations to come. What if the virtual world comes crashing someday? Is the real world as cordial and enthusiastic enough? I doubt.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s the kind of thought we all need to mull over…what if the virtual world comes crashing? Thanks for sowing this seed in my mind..now I will be able to work harder at maintaining a distance from this virtual drug! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. While most of us are dependent on the online media / Internet for work and profession, yet we tend to extend the habit to our leisure’s too. My son seems to be more happy watching Ben 10 on YouTube than seeing me after my day at office 😁. So I probably need to look or dress up like Ben 10 to grab his attention πŸ˜€πŸ˜€πŸ˜€ And with my mighty paunch, that believe me is a mammoth challenge for me.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. πŸ˜‚ That’s quite a common grouse mommies have..My Sil complains that her little boy shows least excitement when she returns from work, esp if the kiddo is sitting in front of the TV watching Transformers!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. With Android Pie I’ve set times for individual apps on the phone. And also windup and DND from 10 pm to 6 am. My phone ‘s Apps are locked out for the day with the scheduled time. Best thing ever. No risk of overbrowsing 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow you successfully completed the challenge. I remember reading your earlier post. You make an excellent point about being accountable to ourselves. Something we all need to practice in life. My only other distraction from phone are books. 😊

    Like

    1. Thanks, Raj!
      But, books are fine, aren’t they? I mean, at least we enrich our lives and our creativity with books. WIth phones, we are only wasting our time, and also ruining our peace of mind, and spoiling our health, too!

      Like

  8. Nicely done. Amazing and inspiring progress! I like how you made it seem that while it took work, it was not so hard that only you could do it, and that it did get easier over time. It makes it seem that much more possible that I, and others, could do it also.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Yay so glad to hear that Shilpa. You seemed to have done wonderfully well. I too make a conscious attempt to stay away from my phone ,a few months back I used to keep checking whenever I posted something on my blog to see an reply to comments but I found my daughter staring at me one day and she told me ” Mumma keep the phone down” That was a defining moment for me.

    Liked by 1 person

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