10 Ways To Kick Your Smartphone Addiction

What do you do when you forget your “smartphone”?

If you are anything like me, you act similar to a child who forgot their favourite toy.

Just last night, my son tried to take my phone away from me.

I immediately took it back from him and said “no”. 

He is 23-months old.

This is embarrassing just writing it.

I should have let him take it and hide it somewhere.

Everything I needed on a Sunday was standing right in front of me, begging to play, and I was worried about checking a “beep”. 

Needless to say, my wife was not exactly thrilled with my actions. 

Did I mention this was embarrassing?

My son is like a sponge right now and absorbs everything.

If I am starring at a screen all day, it is only natural for him to be interested.

Technology is not going anywhere, but there is a time and place for everything.

This morning I googled how much time people spend in front of screens and I saw this headline from “The Daily Mail”, a leading newspaper in the UK: “Average person now spends more time on their phone and laptop than SLEEPING, study claims.”

Evidently I am not alone (and this number seems to be on the rise year).

Comfort in numbers? Not exactly.

The article states that the average person in the UK, spends 8 hours and 41 minutes on electronic devices.

According to the Wall Street Journal, in the US, this number hovers around 9 hours as well.

What is your first response to this headline?

It should be that of surprise or even horror, but look around.

If I add up all the time I sit in front of my television, mobile phone, computer and tablet 8 hours seems about right. 

I hate admitting this. 

You would think that as soon as I finished work I would try and disconnect. But the sad reality is that on my way home I am glued to my phone to catch up on either the news or what my friends are up to, and once I get home, it is not long before I turn on the TV.

Like most people, my work revolves around the computer.

I need the computer to work.

But my smartphone, I usually use just for personal entertainment, and I can do something about this, especially when my own personal entertainment is starring up at me wanting to play. 

Over the past 24 hours I have read over every “life hack” imaginable in regards to loosening the grip the “smartphone” has over me. 

Below are some tips I have come across the last 24 hours that seem “do-able” and not that scary.

Keyword here is “do-able”.

If you have found yourself in the same dilemma and want to share what works for you, please do.

10 Tricks To Kick Your Smartphone Addiction

1. See how much you are using your phone:

Start by seeing how often you check your phone.

Real numbers makes it real and easier to reduce. 

Check out the app Checky to see how often you check your phone per day.

I am not a huge “techie”, or is it “techy”, but this is simple to install.

Great place to start.

I am just learning about these apps – please pass on any others worth mentioning. Moment and StayOnTask seem highly recommended. Any feedback?


2. Turn Off Notifications:

This should be number 1 for many people (myself included).

Hiding the booze = out of site, out of mind.

Eliminate the beeps. 


3. Delete Social Media from your phone:

Interestingly enough my most financially successful friends do not have Facebook accounts.

I cannot say that this is what sets them apart, but In Facebook’s Q2 earnings last year, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that the average US consumer spends 40 minutes on Facebook per day.

If you have almost an hour more each day than your competition, who is going to win?


4. Screen-Free Day:

Take one day a week and do not look at a screen (if at all possible).

If you have plans to watch a movie, that is fine, but limit your phone use to calls that involve making plans with real people and nothing else. 


5. Set Up A Punishment Plan:

Every time you check your phone you have to do something healthy to counter the phone checking.

Every time you check your phone you have to do 10 pushups, 20 crunches, make a donation to your favourite charity (or to make things interesting, your least favourite charity).


6. Do not bring the phone to the breakfast, lunch or dinner table:

The article mentioned above said that more time is spent checking email than eating breakfast.

The easiest fix is simply to not bring your phone with you to eat.


7. Buy a real camera (or use the one you already own):

I take a lot of photos of my son.

All on my phone.

I tend to do nothing with 99% of them.

Would this change if I used a real camera?

I will let you know soon.


along the same lines………….

8. Buy a real alarm clock (or use the one you already own):

Turn your phone off at night.

If possible an hour before you go to bed. 

Have you ever fallen asleep while reading on your smartphone?

What about a real book?

Weird right?

I recently set my phone to “emergency only” mode between 10pm and 8am so only the people that call twice within 5 minutes actually ring.

Most phones have this capability.

Check out Arianna Huffington´s book “The Sleep Revolution” to learn more. 


9. Set Boundaries

A friend of mine only checks Facebook when he is in the bathroom.

He will go unnamed in this article, but you get the idea. 


10. Forget your phone……on purpose

You know what happens when you forget your smartphone?

Absolutely nothing. 

I need to be reminded of this.


These 10 tips to me seem very easy to do, but I guess the real test will come when my son tries to grab my phone again, that is, if I give him the opportunity.

How addicted to your smartphone are you?

Any tips to share?



Michael Thompson / Brand Manager