Let’s face it. There’s definitely nothing new about finding yourself staring at a screen for too long. However, being in quarantine does limit the kind of non-digital activities we can do for fun, making it even harder to stay offline than it already was.
It goes without saying that this is not good for you as it can have serious impacts on your physical and mental health. So, here are some tips you can try out if the lockdown has got you staying on your phone more than usual.
Create Strict No-Gadget Times
A vague resolution to lessen your screen time can be hard to follow, especially when you don’t set any specific restrictions. Even just determining what times of the day you want to take tech-free breaks can lead to a more concrete effort to stay off your phone or computer. Whether it’s a specific time interval (like “from 11 AM to 2 PM”) or conditional setups (like “every time I’m eating a meal”), it can help you be more conscious of your screen time.
Check Your Stats
Most gadgets have a function that shows you your daily or weekly phone usage and how many hours you’re spending on each app. Make it a habit to check yours from time to time not just to get that extra push you need to lessen usage, but also so that you have a better idea of what specific apps you need to reduce your use of if you want to improve your habits.
Don’t Take Your Phone to Bed
This is easier said than done but crucial for managing your screen time. For most people, taking your phone to bed to “watch a YouTube video or two” or “scroll through their feed for a few minutes” before sleeping is the easiest trap to fall into. When the day is done and you’re free until the morning, it’s easy to lose track of time. Before you know it, it’s 4 AM and you’re still scrolling.
Let Your Ears Take the Wheel
Many of us constantly need entertainment or at least something to accompany us when we’re doing something else. That’s normal for people who need to keep their brains as stimulated as possible at all times. So, listening to music while you’re doing chores or putting on a podcast while you’re eating dinner is a good alternative to scrolling through your feed while doing tasks or having a meal in front of your Netflix show.
Turn to Apps That Help You Stay Off Your Phone
There are tons of apps, like OFFTIME and AppBlock, that let you set up times in which your chosen functions – like notifications, incoming calls, or certain apps – are blocked and won’t be available for use. These apps can make you stick to your screen time reduction goals and help you create breaks within your day in which you can truly unplug.