Your Smartphone Addiction Is Ruining Your Life

By Emma Colsey | Uncategorized

Oct 12

Your Smartphone Is Ruining Your Life | It’s Time To Change Things Up & Protect Your Mental Health

It was last Monday when three of the big players, Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp all went down.

Maybe some of you didn’t even notice, and if that’s you I applaud you. Really I do. So many of us (myself included) are completely addicted to social media platforms, and it begs the question……. What are we trying to get from it??

Now of course I am not going to bash social media completely. I do love using the platforms, I love connecting with my family, friends, clients and prospective clients and seeing what everyone is up to. I’ve used social media to grow my business and I am incredibly grateful for it, and am certainly not going to stop using it completely.

I am however feeling pulled to change things up because there are some habits that I have noticed that are not supportive for me. 

Here Are The Problems

The recent whistleblower allegations strengthen the case that social media can be destructive to our mental health. These allegations also support some of the research that had already starting to highlight the link between rising social media usage and increasing rates of depression and anxiety.

Though we can’t place all the blame on the platforms themselves. We, you, I get to take some ownership of our own behaviours. We are in control of our thoughts, our actions and our behaviours no matter of the algorithm, you are the one that gets to say NO… this is not good for me.

When the platforms went down last week it felt such a relief. No need to post anything, because I couldn’t, I didn’t have to check or respond to people. That afternoon I got lots of other things finished off, then decided I was going to do a meditation and then get an early night.

Honestly, it was bliss.

I posted about this on my social media channels afterwards (I know…..sigh) and it seems that so many people were feeling exactly the same. Yet, there we all were again, back on it at the very next available moment!!

When we notice things like this I think it’s important to actually take note instead of just carrying on as you were. Feelings like that are the subtle nudges from the universe that are saying “erm HELLO! it’s time to make some changes here”. 

How To Take Back Your Power

If it felt like a relief to have a night off, to break free from the addiction, then it’s important to ask yourself:

What am I getting from this behaviour?

Is it validation, connection, relaxation (though we know really it’s not fully relaxing), time out, escapism, to keep informed, fear, to make sure you are not missing out??

What is it for you?? We all have our own reasons.

Then consider how else you could be giving those feelings to yourself, but in a way that is actually supportive to your life? When you rely on something externally to fulfil your needs you give away your power to it.

This week with my coaching group I am having a bit of an intention social media detox, or more of a reduction really. This was actually already pre-planned as part of the programme I was running this month, but it just so happened that last weeks outage was the perfect reminder to come and really immerse in this.

So, yes I will still be using social media, but I am focusing on being more intentional with my time on there. No mindless doomscrolling, no picking up my phone between tasks to use it as a distraction or attempted inspiration.

Every moment I am ‘wasting’ on social media I am taken away from the things that I keep on saying I don’t have the time for and it’s complete and utter BS.

Sh*t i could be fluent in French by now if I spent as much time learning french as I do waste on my phone!

Every moment I am on my phone is taking me away from the things that I want to create in my life, putting more of my plans and ideas into action. It’s taking me away from the connection with my kids, friends and family. My house could be a hell of a lot tidier (though I won’t lie, that one is not going on the top of my list), there is a long list of house jobs that need attending to.

So today I invite you to go into your phone and just check your screen time and maybe it could open up your eyes a little and remind you what else you could be doing in that time.

How many times do you say you don’t have the time to work out, or to cook homemade meals, or do some stretching or yoga, to learn something new, to start journaling, to read more, to meditate, to pursue your goals and dreams?

We can all create the space, it’s just a matter of prioritising it rather than turning to distractions and then wondering why you never actually feel any better or move closer towards your goals.

Here are the steps I am taking to make sure that I use my phone as the powerful device that it is, rather than allow it to control, and consume me:

  • Turn off all notifications, they are simply distractions every time you see them flash up. You get to decide when you get to check your messages and app notifications when you have allotted space in your day, stop allowing the habit of constantly picking it up and checking it to be just that thing you do. These distractions take you out of a potential flow state and suck you back into everyone else’s lives, they increase feelings of stress and anxiety you don’t have to do that to yourself.
  • Set boundaries or even a timer for usage, you can set downtime on your phone so that you can’t access it after certain times. I am going to be setting mine so that I cannot access it before 10 am and after 9.30 pm. Not looking at my phone first thing in the morning has been huge for me but I have found myself slipping back and so now have set the restriction on my phone so that it’s just not an option.
  • Also looking at my biggest time drainers (Facebook and Instagram for me) I have set time limits on them for how long I can access them each day. Looking at last weeks time spent on them and reduced it slightly. My intention is to see how low I can get them and still get the work I need to do done, and then set that as the new limit.

Once you have put some of these in place, you can then ask yourself what would you love to be doing more of??

Mine is all about reading, french practice, writing, creating, learning, updating and improving the service I give to my members. I have even been taking some time this weekend to upgrade my space and putting some fairy lights in the gym.

Such a simple thing to switch up the energy and feel of a space in my home has made me smile so much. Changing things, decluttering or reorganising can give you that fresh look and a feeling of spaciousness that always feels good for the soul.

I hope this gives you some things to consider about what may need changing up in your life and with your social media or phone usage.

Has it been hampering your life? Let me know in the comments.

Love Always

PS – Sick of your own BS and ready to level up your life. Get a FREE copy of the Get It Together Life planner HERE and start learning how to set powerful goals and create the habits to change your life.

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