I’m willing to bet it’s much too often. And while smartphones have changed and improved the way we do business, it has also damaged us by creating unrealistic expectations, reducing our attention spans, interrupting our conversations and violating our independence. I can go on and on about the pros and the cons of cell phone overuse, but the truth is that we can all benefit from a reduction in digital distractions.
To help with that, the National Association of Realtors suggests the following:
- Schedule time to check emails and texts. In other words, don’t do it at random; plan for it.
- Curb cell phone compulsion. According to Dr. David Greenfield, founder of The Center for Internet and Technology Addiction and assistant clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, the stimulating effects caused by a smartphone are comparable to those of gambling. Force yourself to leave your cellphone behind.
- Don’t use a smartphone as an alarm clock. Buy an alarm clock and put your phone to bed…somewhere else.
- Don’t keep your phone near you in the car. Sadly, distracted driving now accounts for 10% of all fatal automobile accidents.
- Turn notifications off. Simple. “Notifications are what stimulates that anticipatory response, which causes the stress hormone to elevate.” (Dr. Greenfield)
- Remove or restrict distracting apps. Are all those apps really necessary?
- End the rudeness at social gatherings. This will take a little self-control, but it’s absolutely worth the sacrifice to let others know that your phone does NOT take priority over the people whom you’re with.
Hope these tips can help you avoid the distraction!