How to Stop Phone Addiction – Face the Facts

If you’ve begun to read this article about how to stop phone addiction, it might be because your significant other spends more time looking at the screen than you, or perhaps you haven’t seen your teenager’s eyes in a week, or maybe you realize that your phone controls you.


Today, we’re going to focus on you. And how your phone controls you. We should begin by addressing the phrase that I’ve now used twice already:


“your phone controls you”


It’s time to face the facts.


Examine the Relationship


“Your phone controls you” is not an accurate statement. In actuality, you are allowing your phone to control you. Your phone is an electronic device that you choose to purchase, choose to pay a monthly fee to use, choose to power up, choose to charge, choose to carry with you, choose to pick up when it’s been out of your hand for too long and choose to allow to interrupt you throughout the day. Do you want to control your phone and intentionally use it as a tool, or do you want to allow your phone to control your life?


Do You Have a Mission?


Is there a life goal you’re striving for? Is there a particular objective you want to accomplish in your work life or personal life? Is there an activity you want to participate in each evening? Is there a certain person you want to spend quality time with? Perhaps your desire is to spend as much time on your phone as possible. But that’s probably not the case, otherwise you wouldn’t still be reading.


Are You Satisfied in Your Physical World?


Many people who are glued to their phones perceive that they get more satisfaction from what they look at and reply to on their device than in the physical world right in front of them. There’s also commonly a phenomenon of FOMO – Fear Of Missing Out. They’re willing to ignore the world in front of them out of fear that they might miss out on something very important that’s happening in the digital world.


Do You Tend to Put Things Off?


Perhaps you have a tendency to delay tasks because you don’t feel like doing them or they’re uninteresting to you. Or maybe you’re detail oriented (a few perfectionistic tendencies, maybe?) and you’re not sure what the next perfect step to take will be. Isn’t it so much easier to just avoid all of that by diving into your phone? Does using your phone as a delay crutch ever come back later to bite you in the you-know-where?



Do Interruptions Excite You?


Have you thought about how many people stopped by your desk throughout the day at work (either before COVID or now that you’ve returned onsite) to ask you a question or just to chat? And the fact that they did that annoyed you because they interrupted you? What about your phone? Are you annoyed when your phone notifications interrupt you?


When a co-worker interrupts us, we experience a slight uptick in stress hormones because we know that we’re going to be asked to do something or we don’t want to be bothered when we’re in the middle of doing something. But when it comes to a phone notification, we receive a hit of dopamine…we’re excited about the possibility that someone likes us enough to send a text or we’re thrilled that there’s another Instagram photo being posted.


Next Steps


This is a lot of deep thinking about a phone, right? That’s because when we’ve let our phones control our lives and become an addiction, we’ve moved beyond the physical and created mental and emotional attachments to that gadget. Once you’ve considered your perspective related to the above five areas, you’ll be mentally and emotionally ready to proceed with tactics to stop phone addiction.



And that’s exactly what we’ll cover next week.




For more guidance on creating boundaries between you and your electronic devices, take a look at The Inefficiency Assassin: Time Management Tactics for Working Smarter, Not Longer.

About Helene Segura, M.A. Ed., CPO®

As The Inefficiency Assassin™, Time Management Fixer Helene Segura empowers professionals on the go with the tools to slay lost time. Personal inefficiency at work leads to increased stress levels, lower morale, higher absenteeism, more turnover – and rising spending on employee health care and hiring. Why not improve productivity, decrease stress levels, and increase profits instead?The author of four books – two of which were Amazon best-sellers – Helene Segura has been the featured organization expert in more than 200 media interviews. She has coached hundreds of clients to productivity success and performance improvement by applying neuroscience and behavioral modification techniques to wipe out destructive, time-wasting habits.Helene turns time management on its head by sharing both client case studies and pop culture examples to teach her mind-bending framework for decreasing interruptions, distractions and procrastination so that companies can spend more time generating revenue.

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