“Good morning Sir. It’s 7 a.m. The weather is going to be cool today with chances of light showers.” From this wake-up call to working, cooking, drinking your cup of caffeine-elixir, and working out, do any of these activities involve you without your cell phone?
A mere device of convenience has smoothly transformed to become a major intrusion. With cell phone distraction at bay, the increased dependence on screens has been an alarming phase for your life, maybe more than you care to admit. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration if we even stated that this has become a complete addiction.
Considering this addiction, we will be treading with caution. Our approach to its solution will be aligned with the 5 stages of addiction treatment.
Let’s get started with this support group therapy, shall we?
Stage 1. Pre-Contemplation
This is all about denial—a denial that you can’t move your screen away from your eyes, denial that you may have Nomophobia or “no mobile phone” phobia. We completely understand that. But with this stage, it is all about making you realize how strong the addiction is (maybe stronger than Biohazard’s 928mg of caffeine)!
While you might have already internalized the damage, here’s offering some help with your addiction. We would be providing you a holistic idea about the consistent pandemic called mobile distractions and guide you around with hacks to tackle the addiction.
That said, it’s time to dive into the details!
Stage 2: Contemplation – A Peek at Cell Phone Distraction
Look around you. Apart from the N-95 masks and frenzied use of sanitizers, what do you see in common? “Expressions projected at the screen held in front of the eyes.”
It will probably be safe to say that smartphones have become quite the companion, so much that the real companion is often ignored for the virtual ones. You must have come across many memes based on this topic.
Additionally, the terrifying statistics on your cell phone addiction are not going exactly subtle on the massacre that this distraction has become.
Here’s to give you some perspective with the numbers:
- Average mobile phone users click, tap, and swipe their mobile phones 2,617 times a day.
- Worldwide phone users have crossed the threshold of 3 billion and are predicted to have exponential growth of several hundred million in the coming years.
- 61.20% of the globe’s population own smartphones as of September 2020.
While the latter two statistics prove the rising reliance on phones, the first number is indicative of the twiddling-thumb syndrome following the addiction.
Considering your widened eyes over the numbers, we can safely assume that you have moved on to stage 2: contemplation. This stage will let you see the change that you need to undergo to ensure a screen-free healthier lifestyle.
While we acknowledge the crucial role that screens play for some activities, we believe you can easily do away with some of these engagements, reducing the time consumed to a bare minimum.
Think of the physiological, psychological, and sociological impact. With so much at stake and the distraction breaching all ages, it is time to start on with some hacks to break up this cell phone distraction.
Stage 3 & Stage 4: How to Break Up the Distraction
Let’s not get obvious here. We won’t tell you about the:
- reduced attention span,
- potential loneliness,
- mitigating eye-health, etc.
That’s something that parents all over the globe have been putting out on banners. As a result, these facts are much likely to be considered ‘preaching.’
We, on the other hand, have a greater concern—your cell phones, most likely, are gnawing away your me-time and hence, your creative potentials. That is something that should never be compromised. Thus, it’s time you follow up on the hacks from the pros that have been proven to be effective across all ages.
Here let me fire away the life-altering, screen-shattering hacks that pose as Stage 3 Preparation and Stage 4 Action to cure your addiction:
1. Lean on an App to Track Your Daily Usage of Cell Phones
It would be safe to say that you have some tiny “time thieves” lurking in your mobile phones, crunching and munching away your precious hours. For the hacks, we start with the most convenient one—installing phone usage tracker apps.
Here is a list of the best ones for both the Android and the iOS platforms in 2020.
- QualityTime – My Digital Diet
- YourHour – Phone Addiction Tracker and Controller
- Stay Focused – App Block (Control Phone Addiction)
- Social Fever App Usage Tracker
- PhoneUsage Tracker
With either of these apps playing the ‘personal trainer’ or referee, your hours spent on social media platforms and your phone, as a whole, are tracked down. While you check the hours for the first time, beware: the numbers may not be for the weak hearts!
2. Re-Subscribe to Your Hobbies
The price that you pay for your cell phone distraction is your growing distance from your hobbies. While you kill time with your screen-related engagements, you lose the roots of your hobbies.
So, make sure to do the following steps:
- List down your hobbies.
- Put it up on your headboard or sticky notes.
- Start slow on your hobbies.
- Set realistic goals, dividing the time spent on your phones and your hobby.
Once you rekindle your old, highschool-sweetheart of love, the attachment with the screen will eventually wither away.
3. Take a Vow of Silence From Social Media Platforms
When was the last time you ate without taking a click or went out with your friends without hashtagging the pic on Instagram? How often do you giggle while scrolling down Facebook feeds or go ‘aww’ at the cute kitty and doggo videos?
We are guessing, a lot!
The numbers confirm our opinion. As per the World Economic Forum, Millennials spent approximately 2 hours 38 minutes and Gen Z 2 hours 55 minutes daily on social media platforms.
Additionally, if you thought Covid-19 changed Ecommerce only, you are mistaken. The recent pandemic state and its lockdown and social distancing have unfortunately brought you closer to your screens.
The landscape looks something like this:
So, here is the most challenging hack of all—go nuclear on your social media apps. Before you go AWOL on us after listening to this, hear us out!
The potential impact of social media platforms goes even beyond the mere time spent on it. You tend to take more interest in others’ lives, ending up comparing that with yours. And this, our ‘friends, Romans, and countrymen,’ has innumerable adversities.
Remember, even if you delete the apps, you still have your accounts there. Also, if deleting it seems too much of an anxiety trigger, follow up with the time spent (using the apps on Hack 101) and put a realistic cap to it.
4. Get Your Silent/Do Not Disturb Mode Working Occasionally
For this hack, acknowledge first the fact that introspection or “me” time is incomparable. The diverse ringtones and tunes emerging from your cell phone are baits that will draw out hours from your life.
While putting your phone on silent during meals or work meetings is a matter of manners, doing the same at other times means you are just prioritizing yourself. This will help you go back to your old habits and stay away from technological labyrinths.
5. Set a Realistic To-Do List for the Day Sans Any Screen-Involvement
How often do we treat ourselves for a great performance at work? Maybe a pizza or a bowl of ice cream? Why don’t you do the same for your cell phone distraction?
What you need to do is:
- Sit down with a daily bucket list before sleeping off at night.
- Make sure that the list of activities involves minimum screen time.
- Accomplish the listed jobs and then reward yourself with some social media scrolling.
So, do we have a deal? Get started, ASAP!
6. Where Have Your Books/Magazines Gone?
Ask around, and your last generation will tell you the attraction of the tangible books—the tranquility involved in flipping the pages while your palm hugs a cup of your warm caffeine.
With Kindles, Ipads, and tablets, that charm is long lost. However, for those looking and determined to dig away from this distraction, we suggest you try this reconnection. Reading, not on screens, but with the physical and tangible books will help you feel grounded and rekindle yet another hobby that will be responsible for your personal growth.
So, dust the cobwebs off your bookshelf, and get your mind its treat of imagination!
7. Go Serial Killer on Your Notifications
Don’t get us wrong! We are not asking you to go all ‘Ted Bundy’ on your notifications but also, can you do that, please? Hear us out before freaking out completely.
All of your sneaky apps frequently give out tiny beckonings via notifications, reminding you of their existence.
While being notified is appreciated occasionally, it can surmount to considerable distraction if the phone goes off every 5 minutes.
The best way out? Turn off notifications, even if for a couple of hours. You will then have the power not to be distracted from your contemporary activity and enjoy scanning through notifications at your preferred time.
8. Get the Screen Glares Away an Hour Before Sleep
What’s the best excuse that you put on for keeping your cell phone on your nightstand?
Let me guess. Alarm?
Quit the excuse queue, your alarm clock can serve the purpose well! Additionally, you won’t have the ‘convenient access’ to your screen right before you sleep.
Seems harsh? Follow through and you will experience a sudden and considerable improvement in your daily schedule. Without your phone in an arm’s reach from your bed, you also won’t start your day by scrolling social media feeds.
9. Go for a Black and White Mode
OLED or Organic Light-Emitting Diode is the latest call of the display technology in cell phones. With promises of better black themes and incredible pixel-views, the color contrast in this display is too attractive.
However, it is this color-coding that fetches and attaches you for a longer time on your cell phones. For those seeking to get rid of your cell phone distraction, your best way forward is by opting for grayscale. This makes the screen much less desirable to look at.
As of recent, multiple phones come with ‘bedtime mode’ that switches off the phone to grayscale mode. With the color drained from your phone, the social media platforms become immediately unattractive. In case you are seeking a reference, think of the memory Dump ground in Pixar’s Inside Out.
10. Be Ready for the Withdrawal Symptoms
Much like any addiction, acting on the cell phone distraction also brings in withdrawal symptoms (read up Nomophobia or “no mobile phone” phobia). While planning to leave your phone at home might seem a brave move, agitations, distractions, stressing out, and getting upset are surefire consequences.
Considering that cell phones have become the representative for connectivity, staying away from them is a huge stress. Researchers have also gone their distance to say that compulsive cell phone behavior is a resultant of the Pavlovian conditioning system.
The tune of cell phone notifications somehow sends a signal that some great news is on its way, and you are compelled to check your phone, considering that the notification meets up to your expectation leading to a release of dopamine into your system. With that dopamine release around, your anxiety is sure to kick in. So, prepare yourself for that!
11. Pro Hack: Embrace Your Smart Speakers
Do you know that grey pretty piece of technology greeting you with the weather update? Your Alexa/ Siri/Cortana/Google at play via smart speakers? They can be quite the acquaintance when you are trying to get rid of your cell phone distraction.
Considering that you need the support of your phones to carry out daily activities, you can always rely on screen-less technology. This will help keep the smartphone away from your hands for a prolonged period.
The Final Stage
Nearing the end of your addiction recovery, the last stage matters the most.
This 5th and final stage is all about maintenance or recovery. Don’t let your cellular bridles go loose thinking that you are over your cell phone distraction.
You can always rely on the ‘hair band technique’ to keep the scrolling thumbs away. Maybe, you will be reminded that those opposable thumbs of yours can do much better—the guides of which you can find in the diverse blogs posted on the site or our social media sites.
What say, you game?
More Tips to Avoid Cell Phone Distraction
The success of our day is largely dependent on the quality of our planning. Not to miss out anything in their to-dos, some people prefer to make a list of upcoming tasks in a notebook, while others have long started using digital technology solutions.
Calendar applications are some of the main tools that are worth using to organize our life and plan your time carefully.
Many people have switched to specific tools; however, there are still some who do not use calendars on a daily basis. They may find some applications uncomfortable to use, non-functional, or expensive.
In this article, we are going to check out the best calendars apps to help you stay organized.
Before You Download
As you are no doubt aware, there are all kinds of calendar apps available. Instead of you sifting through the hundreds of them, we’ve handpicked 10 of the best calendar apps you can get. On top of glowing reviews from each one, we’ve considered the following aspects when creating this list:
- User Interface – How you navigate the app should be smooth and simple. The buttons on the app should be clear, obvious and easy to move through.
- Synchronization – Whether it’s with other calendar apps or with other apps, syncing apps should be easy and enhance your overall experience with the app.
- Additional features – Since there are so many options for calendars, many of these apps offer additional features. These features make the apps stand out from the other apps and provide unique experiences to you.
1. Any.do Calendar
This calendar has direct integration with Any.Do To-Do List, which gives you a unique tandem of two applications.
Apart from its extended functionality, Cal Calendar is easy to use. The creation of events is very simple and fast.
What is more, depending on the name of the event, the application automatically adds contacts and geolocation data to the entry description. You can even import your lists and entries from Any.do.
Any.do Calendar is a great option for any type of user. It is very convenient and doesn’t overcomplicate the mode of display.
Another good thing is that this tool is available for free, so you can use it without spending a dime for the software.
2. Google Calendar
Google Calendar is the official calendar for Android devices that has been tested out by many users around the globe. If you are right now trying to get away from it, consider changing your mind.
Since this application is installed on most Android devices by default, many users think that there is nothing special in this program. They are wrong.
Google has been updating its calendar for quite a few years, and now it comes in Material Design with advanced event features, direct integration into other Google services (for example, supports reminders and Google Now), and comes with Exchange support.
The program is super easy and will not cost a dime for you. It is a good thing, right?
Calendar is a relatively new app. It works as a web app and for both iOS and Android devices. It is an intelligent app that learns your contacts, schedule and tasks. It also helps you schedule and arrange meetings according to your available time slots.
A good thing about Calendar is that it allows you to sync up with other calendars you use such as Apple Calendar and Google Calendar. And so you can manage all the calendars you have in one place.
Calendar also gives you analytics of your meetings, giving you a clear picture on how you can improve your time management.
4. Business Calendar
Business Calendar is geared towards people who use their calendar for work purposes and business task planning. It offers different modes with wide configuration capabilities.
The application gives a default view mode by months, and events can be marked in different colors. Display modes/ sorting can be adjusted to your needs (by month, day, year, or events).
You can also set a multi-day viewing mode to see how things look for the next few days. Scrolling up and down moves you by month, and if you check a few days, they will be shown in a more detailed form.
The day display mode offers hourly scheduling, and the schedule mode provides a detailed schedule for a single event.
Business Calendar is a great tool for planning/ scheduling cases, tasks, and events. There is a support for recurring events, which can be set up in just a few clicks.
Having purchased software, you can use it to import and export other calendars, delete, copy, or move several events at the same time.
Android Business Calendar application may seem somewhat chaotic, but it works fine and is easy to work with if you play with it for a while.
A full version of the application is available for $4.99, but you can also find a free version for the app test drive.
aCalendar opens our collection of top 10 calendar applications available on the market today. With its appealing design, easy navigation, and great functionality, it is one of the most popular calendar apps in our list.
Some of extra functions include color schemes for each case type (48 colors to choose from), different types of demonstrations, different widgets, moon phases, and much more.
Taking into account it functionality, aCalendar is a reliable calendar application that has an easy-to-navigate interface with three display options. Scrolling from side to side allows you to switch between the display modes of the month, week and day.
When scrolling down and up, you are moving through the calendar at intervals in accordance with the selected display mode.
Apart from its time planning feature, aCalendar synchronizes photos from contact lists or social networks to remind you about birthdays, anniversaries, or any other special dates.
The program also supports data transfer through NFC and full-screen widgets, which eases your work with any data.
The program is available for free, but you can also get even more features if you buy the extended version of software for $4.99.
6. DigiCal Calendar
DigiCal Calendar is very similar to Cal Calendar in the fact that the application focuses on design more than on its functionality. However, this doesn’t mean that the application doesn’t serve the purpose.
With this calendar application, you can synchronize all your calendars and view them in different ways.
Along with the basic functions, this program comes with support for Google Calendar, Outlook, and includes some unique and interesting features. You can match keywords to the image or set up a dark theme.
The app can even show you the weather forecast for three days. There are many other features that deserve the attention of people who really like to use calendar applications.
SolCalendar can be called a universal application. It claims to be an all-in-one digital solution having a basic calendar functionality combined with some other advanced features, such as weather forecast for a specific day.
The application supports Google Calendar, as well as tasks, widgets, lunar calendar and even Foursquare.
Those searching for a calendar application to cover just everything in its functionality, SolCalendar is a program to consider. There are a lot of interesting things in this application; the program does an excellent job working in “all-in-one” mode.
Test SolCalendar – the application is available for free. You can test it out without purchasing the service.
8. IRL Event Social Network
One of the most unique apps on this list is the IRL Event Social Network app. As you can guess from the name, the core focus of this app is social networking. Unlike other social media platforms, you can consider this platform to function similar to Meetup.com. It’s a site where you can connect with other people within your area that share a similar interest.
IRL is that while also providing a convenient calendar for you to schedule events and plan out your day. Though due to it being a secondary focus, you’re lacking a lot of the syncing aspects that other apps have on this list. Regardless, because of this huge social feature, it’s worth considering for those who want to make more connections.
9. Today Calendar
Today Calendar is one of the most hip and edgy calendars in our list. The solution was one of the first ones that really embraced Material Design and remains one of the few that adhere to the neat style.
The calendar application offers bold colors, simple controls, and great functionality. This is not as heavy an application as many others; it will not eat all the memory of your device.
If you are not searching for something complicated and over-functional, Today Calendar is what you need. You can always test the application before paying for it – the program is available for free.
Timepage is an intuitive calendar app that will manage your time in a way that other calendar apps can’t. It offers the same sort of functions that you’d expect from other calendar apps: opportunities to record events, notifications and reminders, weather, and driving duration to a particular event. However, the app goes beyond those functionalities in two ways.
The first way is that while the app sends you notifications, it also has reminders for you for what is coming up next. That bit of extra time can allow you to prepare and make adjustments to your day if need be.
The second function – which is more important – is the heat map when you go to see the full view of your calendar. This heat map indicates what days you are most busy and other days where you are freer. This heat map provides a quick glance to determine broadly what days are good to add more events and other tasks.
Searching for the right application to manage your various calendars and plan your busy day can sometimes turn into a streak of obstacles.
Most of us need flexible applications that can be easily used to manage our tough schedule. The application should have all necessary time planning functions and be intuitive.
Stylish design and limitless compatibility also matter. It is not always easy to find such a program.
The above digital calendar solutions fall under the category “worth” of being used. They are modern, multifunctional, easy, and easy. Pick the one you like!