Advice Column – How to put your phone down

9 April 2019

Scribe staff

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     Most of us are guilty of playing on our phones when we should be doing something more productive, like homework. Sometimes that moment we get on our phones is good for us to run away from the world and just take a second to relax, but this can sometimes be detrimental when it comes to homework and studying. The moment we get on social media or start playing games, we tend to get lost in a never-ending hole of online catastrophe. Luckily, I have some helpful hints on how to put down your phone and get your work done. (Most of my ideas are for iPhone users)

  1. Turn on “Screen Time” – This feature was the best thing that could have happened for smartphones. It allows the user to set up time when they can start looking at their social and gaming apps. I know mine is set to turn all of those apps on after 6 pm and it only allows me to be on them for two hours. Other apps like email or canvas or google docs are available for me to use at all times of the day. When I started doing this, I began to realize how many times, while I do homework, I go to pick up my phone and do something pointless on it.
  2. Change the color settings – If you go into your settings and click on “Accessibility”, you will be able to pick a black and white color base for your smartphone. The human eye migrates to things that are colorful and exciting, which is why we are on our smartphones all the time. If we changed the bright colors to only be black and white, we would be less likely to want to look at our phones.
  3. Turn off all notifications that aren’t from real people – I know I am guilty of having notifications for almost every app on my phone, which can sometimes be overwhelming. But when I see that notification pop up, I am more likely to click on it because I am reminded that it is there. If I turned off my notifications for things like that, I would only be receiving notifications from people who genuinely do want to speak with me, and who I can have a human conversation with.
  4. Turn your phone off – When you do this, you won’t be getting any notifications from anyone, and you won’t be able to even pick it up and look at the contents inside. By doing this, you would have to physically turn your phone back on and that could take a long time. And if you wait long enough, you might not even want to look at it anymore.
  5. Put your phone in another room – If you do your homework in the kitchen, then put your phone in the bedroom with the sound off. You won’t be tempted to look at your phone because it won’t be in the same room as you. You won’t have any distractions and the only way to look at it is to get up and walk into the bedroom. If you do this, it would feel like a reward when you finish and go get your phone and there are notifications all over the place.

     Even though this isn’t an exhaustive list, I believe that it is doing enough to where it could really help you out. You don’t have to do all of the things that are listed here, but maybe doing one or two or them to start would be helpful towards your time management. I was notorious for picking up my phone every five seconds when I am doing homework, but now I get my homework done faster and by the time I am winding down for bed, I get about an hour to just messing around without being anxiety stricken. If you decide to take up any of these things, make sure to write back letting us know how it goes!