Mobile phone addiction is one of the biggest problems of the modern-day world. It is important to make sure that you control your mobile phone, and not let it control you. How to break the mobile phone addiction?
Some people are naive and say “Well, if you don’t want to use the phone, then just don’t do it”. But, they don’t realize what they are talking about. It is like telling a person who wants to quit smoking, “If you don’t want to smoke, then don’t do it”. It does not work that way.
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It is difficult to stop a certain habit just like that because they change the biochemistry of your body; they create new neural connections/paths in your brain, which is strengthened with repetition. You can’t unlearn it just like that.
It is a much harder process to stop a certain habit. Of course, it is possible to do it, but you should know how to do it. Without further ado, let’s get started!
1) Find A Replacement
This is something that a lot of people do not understand, or they underestimate – you have to find a replacement.
Why do we even take our mobile phones out of the pocket in different situations? Find the real reason behind it.
Sometimes it is just that you feel bored, or maybe you are in a subway or on a bus, and you want to avoid eye contact with strangers.
Or, you may be at a party and you don’t know most people there. Instead of sitting there doing nothing, which looks weird, you may grab your mobile phone and do something there, which creates the impression that you are doing something very important there.
In that case, you need to find a replacement for times like these.
What are those situations for you where you take your mobile phone? Think about the real reason behind it, find a replacement – what are you going to instead?
Because when you want to unlearn this habit, you have to find what you are going to do in the time that you free up from this habit. For example, you could buy an e-book reader, and read books, instead of wasting your time on your mobile phone.
Of course, it is a lot less addictive, because while you are reading a book, you are doing ONLY that – there is no chance for you to click any links around it because it only has plain text.
It is crucially important to find the replacement.
2) Fill In Your Day
Set different goals/tasks for yourself and fill in your day. We all have 24 hours a day – we sleep for 8 hours, work for about 8 hours, and then we do the chores for a few hours.
So you have about 5-6 hours left, every day. What are you going to do during this time? It is really important to keep a schedule, decide in advance what you are going to do.
Nowadays, a lot of parents complain that their kids are addicted to mobile phones and similar gadgets, playing games, etc.
Here’s an anecdote:
I know a guy, a talented entrepreneur, who had a 6-year old kid. When I visited their home, it was interesting to see a schedule, for his kid, stuck to the wall. It stated exactly what they are going to do each day of the week.
Even though it may seem like a very strict way of parenting, in reality, the kid was very happy.
They were happy because they knew, in advance, what they were going to do, and kept themselves busy doing something interesting. You can do the same for yourself.
3) Boost Your Self-Confidence And Energy Level
If you are wondering “What do they have to do with mobile phone addiction?!”, let me share with you a story from my life:
I noticed that whenever there is a certain difficult business decision that I need to make or a certain difficult task to do, I had the temptation to switch to browse the Internet or play computer games.
I quickly noticed this pattern that I preferred to do something much easier, and more comfortable, whenever I had to something very difficult or uncomfortable.
When I realized that, I stopped that entirely. Of course, whenever there is something that you don’t like doing, you don’t feel comfortable or you don’t feel confident enough; your brain suggests you some easier alternatives.
That’s why, these two things are connected – you have got to boost your confidence and energy level so that when there is something difficult that you need to address, you don’t feel uncomfortable. Instead, you feel stronger and believe that you can do it.
4) Internet-Free days
It is a lot easier to completely stop this mobile phone (or, the Internet) addiction altogether instead of trying to control it.
Because, once you grab your phone, you would want to reply to the messages, check out the updates, etc. It is really hard to stop once you are already there, using it.
That is the concept of Internet-Free days – you can pick any day of your choice, where you would just turn off the Internet on your mobile phone, and you only use it as a phone, just to make calls. And, that’s it – you don’t use the Internet at all that day.
If you do it for just one day, sure enough, you won’t miss anything important in your life. Even if someone messaged you, you could reply to them the next day.
5) Phone-Free Areas At Home
It is similar to what we have discussed above. You may decide that you won’t use your mobile phone in some areas of your home.
You may even decide that you won’t let the gadgets in that room. 😊 Instead of trying to counter the temptation to use the mobile phone, you just won’t have it there at all.
6) Decide On The Time To Answer Emails/Messages
Whenever you get a message from your friend, you want to read it. Once you have read the message, you want to reply to it. Otherwise, why would you even open it in the first place?
Instead of getting distracted throughout the day, you can decide in advance that you will only read or respond to the messages/emails during certain periods of the day.
Or, if you feel that you need to reply more frequently, then you may decide to respond to the messages/emails 2 times a day – once in the morning, and once in the afternoon/evening.
During the other times, you don’t do it at all.
7) Uninstall Apps, Unsubscribe, and Turn Off Notifications
Instead of trying to battle your temptation to use a mobile app, it is a lot easier to just delete/uninstall it altogether. Again, this is quite intuitively understandable; probably, you have tried that already.
When you do this, you reduce the temptation to check out on those notifications and to react on that.
You want to turn off the notifications because you don’t want them to disturb you. Remember, you control your phone; it is not the other way.
8) Logout Or Go Incognito
Different social media platforms (YouTube, Facebook, etc.) know you better than your parents, your friends, and sometimes they even know you better than you know yourself.
Because they have this extensive history of everything that you have been doing on the Internet for years. They know your interests, your choices, how much time you spend, etc.
They almost have detailed research about you, with clear conclusions.
That is exactly the reason why Bill Gates, Steve Jobs restricted their kids from using the gadgets significantly, even though these are the guys who created this computer (mobile phone) revolution.
And that’s why, if you are browsing social media without logging in (or in incognito mode), it won’t have the history about you. Therefore, it will not suggest everything it knows you will like.
It will become much easier for you to only watch the things that you want to and not the things that are suggested by those Artificial Intelligent (AI) Engines, which are really intelligent. 😊
9) Keep Your Mobile Phone Away While Working/Studying
Often while working/studying, we get bored, and always have the temptation to start procrastinating by grabbing the mobile phone and check something there.
Another simple, yet effective way to avoid using the mobile phone while working/studying is to keep it somewhere else, perhaps in another room, instead of keeping it at your desk.
Therefore, you have to go out (away from where you work/study) to get your phone.
That is what I follow to make sure that my work is productive, and I encourage you to do the same.
10) Do Not Multitask
Several researchers proved that we human beings cannot multitask, which means that if you browse through the Internet while doing something else at the same time, you are exhausting yourself.
Imagine you are watching TV, and you start checking your mobile phone.
You immediately exhaust yourself; within just 30 minutes, you can feel like your energy is going out. Because we humans cannot multitask!
Anyway, you will not be able to do it efficiently. You will only end up being tired and frustrated.
If you want to check your phone, make sure that you are doing only that, and not doing other things simultaneously.
And, of course, please don’t use your phone or text your friends while driving – that’s weird. A lot of people do that, and it is crazy. Don’t do it – it can cost you your life!
These were the 10 powerful tips that can help you break your mobile phone addiction. Make sure that you control your phone, and not the phone controls you.
P.S. Please let me know in the comments which tip(s) resonates with you the most. If you know any other valuable tips, feel free to share them in the comments below. We all will benefit from it. Also, share this article with your friends who you feel need to know this information.