It’s a little wonder that smartphones have become so important for our everyday life. We depend on them for almost everything. They keep us connected with the world, set reminders for us, let us listen to music, click pictures, browse the internet, and so much more. So, it becomes easy to overlook the signs of smartphone addiction. No doubt, that smartphones provide us with a power to explore things, makes us competent and opens the world of possibilities (in terms of information) at our fingertips. But things go wrong when we become slaves to this technology.
Most of us have a manic obsession to check smartphones constantly while working, eating, watching TV, walking or even while driving. And when we are away from our smartphone, we are in constant fear of missing out on important texts or calls. Ignoring these signs of smartphone addiction can put you in adverse conditions.
If you are wondering if you suffer from smartphone addiction, here are some common symptoms that will help you figure it out.
- A desire to use your Android smartphone or IOS mobile more often even if you don’t have any specific tasks to perform on it
- Phantom vibrations- You strongly feel that you have received a new message or call even if there is no notification. This phenomenon is known as phantom vibration syndrome in medical term
- Nomophobia- It is an anxiety disorder which relates to the fear of being without a smartphone
- Constant failed attempts to use your smartphone less often
- Obsession with using a smartphone
- Extreme smartphone usage causes problems in personal and professional relationships
- You feel anxious when you don’t have the newest or latest mobile, gadgets, apps and features
- Feeling anxious, depressed, worried, angry, restless when your mobile network is not available
If you have determined that you do in fact suffer from smartphone addiction, here are some simple tips to get rid of it.
Plan a Schedule
There’s no specific time of the day where you will receive a notification, friend request or get tagged in a post. However, to get rid of your smartphone addiction, you can set aside specific times during the day to check your notifications. In this time that you set for yourself, you can go through all your notifications and apps. Once you are done, keep yourself away from your smartphone and notifications till the next scheduled slot. Doing this will give you an understanding that, you can survive without checking your smartphone every few seconds.
Get Rid of Addictive Apps
Whatsapp, Instagram and Facebook have become the top leading apps that take up most of our time. While getting rid of them might be hard, you can try to install one or two apps, at least for a while. And even if you are tempted to check, you can always access these social media platforms through a PC or your laptop. Moreover, the usage of these apps becomes less on a laptop as compared to your smartphone. So, it is a win-win situation.
Install Useful Apps
You can always download apps that will not just keep a track of your smartphone usage, but also remind you to stop using your phone once you have spent sufficient amount of time using it. These apps can be highly useful to get your smartphone addiction under control. Some apps that you can check out are RescueTime and AppDetox.
1Create NO Phone Zones
To make sure that you are interacting with actual people around you and not the virtual ones in your smartphone, create NO phone zones at work and home. For example, you can always keep your phone aside in the living room to spend more time with your family. Similarly, kick your phone out of the bed at night and opt for an actual alarm clock. With the smartphone in bed, we tend to lose track of time and end up using our smartphone while we should be sleeping. Create such zones for a healthier lifestyle.
Switch to a Basic Phone
This is for people whose smartphone addiction level is at a high. To detox, get rid of your smartphone for some time and go back to using a basic feature phone without internet connectivity. If you don’t have one, you can buy a phone for less than Rs 2000 to help you on this mission. These feature phones will let you carry out basic communication like calling and texting. Once you have gotten rid of the thoughts of using your smartphone, you can switch back to your smartphone with a certain level of control.
Some of the other tips that you can make use of are:
- Turn off your smartphone once in a while or at least an hour before bed
- Turn on your smartphone again after finishing your morning routine. This will give you enough time to concentrate on shower, dressing, and breakfast
- Change the auto-sync settings of the smartphone. You don’t have to look at every single email and message as it comes.