A Simple Mindful Smart Phone Practice
For most people today, from the moment we started using our smartphones, these tiny handheld devices became the center of our world. The average user not only has their smart phone on them at all times, but studies have found that around 75% of people use their phones at all times during the day, even in the bathroom. Most people claim they can’t survive one day without their phones and the average person checks their phone 110 times per day, while the most addicted individuals check their phones as much as 900 times per day!
Smartphones have helped create generation of users that are more connected than ever, but it has also created millions of users who are overloaded, overwhelmed and not connected with the real world. In fact, according to a study at Baylor University, approximately 60 percent of college students admit they may be addicted to their phones.
Issues such as “Text Neck,” a serious problem with the decomposition of the vertebrae in the neck are forming in adults, teens and children around the globe. People are permanently damaging their necks from staring at their phones too much during the day. Our brains are fried from excessive cell phone, many studies have even found that this may ultimately fry our immune systems.
There is no reason to completely abandon your smart phone, because even with all of the negatives, there are so many positives that these little pieces of technology can bring. The good news is, there are ways that you can be more mindful about how you use your smart phone as you start creating a more healthy relationship with your handheld device.
Take a Daily Brain Vacation
Give your brain a vacation each and every day, even if it is only for 10 minutes at a time. Take a few minutes and start meditating or clearing your mind. This means really unplugging, not just abandoning your phone to watch television or spending time on your computer. Put your phone in a completely different room so you can’t access it, even if you want to. This practice may be difficult at first, but over time it will become much easier. Try to add multiple “breaks” during the day to retrain your brain and the way that you think about your cell phone use.
Change Up Your Morning Routine
Your morning routine sets the stage for the rest of your day. Instead of watching television, checking your phone in bed and constantly sending out texts and emails as you get ready, set a calm and phone-free routine. Wake up, unwind, meditate, shower, get ready, have breakfast and go on with your day. Make an effort to reign in your morning chaos, by removing excessive cell phone use and technology use from your routine. Once you get to work, then you can start your workday. Change your morning routine and it will change the way you feel throughout the rest of your day.
Take Your Weekends Back
Your weekends are a time for you to decompress and get the rest you need to bring a renewed energy back to work on Monday. Use your weekends in this way. Don’t let yourself get bogged down by your phone. Set boundaries. Don’t start answering emails non-stop on the weekend, as it will set a precedent that you are always on call and available. If it makes you too nervous to be without your phone and your email all weekend long, set times during your day to answer emails. Perhaps, this is just 10 AM and 5 PM on Saturdays for 30 minutes at a time. When it’s not time to check emails, leave your phone alone.
Add New Phone-Free Activities to Your Week
Plan activities that can help remind you of all you may be missing out on in the world with your face buried in your phone. These activities can include hiking, yoga, jogging, an exercise class or any activity where you can’t be on your phone. The more you do this, the more you will start to see just how refreshing and relaxing it can be to unwind, unplug and start doing activities without your phone. This is an easy way to start including phone-free activities into your weekly routine.
These simple, mindful smart phone practices can start completely changing the way you rely on your phone, and improve your health and boost your mental and emotional well-being. Try these simple approaches to changing the way you interact with your phone and see for yourself what type of impact it can have on your life.