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It Is Called A Smart Phone So Be A Smart User Too 6 Ways To Cut Down On Excessive Screen time

8 April 2020 Blog

It took a nasty migraine recently to bring me to the reality of how much harm one can get from having your eyes glued to the screen of your phone,computer or television set.It is called excessive screen time ,and 3 days later I am still paying dearly as my eyes seem to be falling off their sockets. After six hours of torture in the form of nonstop phone and laptop usage, working from home and helping my children with their homework as their schools set up online classrooms at this time and have continued teaching. My hands too were begging for a break. It was time for a wake-up call

Just like me, many people are spending spend too much time on their phones, on computers  and TV screens at this time when everyone is encouraged to stay at home probably working from home, or  just to while away time swiping through  social media. More often than not . “Just checking something, or reading my mail or messages real quick” often turns into a 2-3 hour routine, pretty pictures keep popping up luring you to visit yet another site

A  2018 Nielson study found that most adults spend about two hours and 22 minutes per day consuming media on their devices. That number doesn’t seem to include time spent messaging. At this time, It may be safe to estimate that time may have extended to up to four hours per day — until we  suffer migraines or challenges to health .

How about we avoid this and commit to do something about it. Especially now that children are having to study online(including my 4 year old  with my help) . once they get hooked it may be difficult to unlearn.

The WHO(world health organisation) says children under 5 years of age should not have more than an hour of screen time daily

According to experts, the smartphone is a slot machine that exploits the way all our brains work: smartphones are so addictive because humans crave dopamine (the happiness molecule), and our phones provide it. Product designers too design products that take advantage of this vulnerability and get us hooked.

Studies show that besides the repetitive strain injury the effects of excessive screen time or phone addiction causes anxiety and terminologies exist to describe some of the symptoms

  • Nomophobia. “No-Mobile-Phobia.” Which means, the fear of being without your device. 
  • FOMO. The fear of missing out. 
  • Ringxiety. Imagined rings or vibrations that result in checking your phone often. 
  • Textiety. Anxiety associated with feeling like you have to respond to a text message promptly

So how can you cut down on screen time

If you are shaken by the thought, then chances are you are already addicted and that is why you need this intervention. Read on

Make your phone boring

Do away with those bright colors, and interactive apps on your phone .This is fantastic . You can use those apps on your laptop, but you are less likely to carry your laptop around as much as you carry your phone. It works

Do not set wake up alarms on your phone

All it takes is your alarm going off in the morning, you pick it up with the intention of turning off the alarm but one thing leads to another and 30 minutes later it is still in your hand luring you  into long, unplanned phone sessions.

Turn off almost all notifications

This trick is amazing. It is guaranteed to take away all the distractions from your phone .At first, you’ll find it hard, and then, you discover there is absolutely nothing  waiting there for you that cannot wait. However, you can make a few exceptions to this rule

.Never take your phone with you when you use the bathroom

 I know this one will hit you hard because we are all so guilty. Taking your phone with you makes you spend more time checking scores, swiping through social media or playing games. This  habit could significantly increase your daily screen time.

No phones at the dinner table

 Trust me; most families are losing out on valuable bonding time. why text or chat at the dinner table,Sadly most of do this, and for what? A game or the latest news on social media. They will always be there, new stories spring up everyday but your family ,No. the children grow and leave home, If you successfully enforce this rule, you will gain your family and cut down on screen time, it’s a win win for-you , thank me later

“Selfie” addicts please gather here

Say with me slowly. “I will slow down on my selfies”.now breathe there you go, yes you can!

So much selfie taking these days,sometimes we focus on capturing events in pictures instead of creating the memories in our hearts, where they are safely stored forever, phones may crash ,get stolen or missing, and when you have so many pictures you will also spend so much time looking at  them .

Leave your phone behind intentionally

On the weekends for instance when you go to church, or when you visit with friends, eventually you will see that it won’t kill you to do without it for a few hours and you will save yourself screen time that may be harmful .Your friends and family too will adjust with time and know when not to call or text you and you will be better for it,

I hope you find this useful

Good luck

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