I periodically run small accountability projects on Facebook – a recent one was about phone usage.
I started using the (buggy) early release version of iOS 12 because I was really interested in the ‘screen time’ feature. After a week of trying to use my phone ‘naturally’ I was pretty shamed by amount of time I spent glued to my device. (Picking it up 100 times a day is amazing)
The accountability bit was: I’m planning on posting the results once a week until they either improve, or I stop being embarrassed by them.
The final results were (with links to the facebook posts:
|Week||hours and minutes per day|
|Week 4||1:29 (Mostly due to having lots of guests stay over so there wasn’t time to play on phone)|
|Week 5||who knows?|
|Week 6||0:19 (Finally got the hang of it)|
|Week 7||0:36 (of which 32% was google maps).|
They started pretty appallingly (I was amazed), but got rapidly better at week 6. At the time I wrote:
I had a proper think and realised that, while in the house, my phone is almost always the second best device to use (I got myself a nice camera recently, all my notifications go through to my watch and are actually best dealt with on a laptop). So I may as well only use it when I’m out of the house.
So that’s what I’ve been doing – the phone has been charging by the door and I’ve only picked it up when leaving the house.
And I was able to mostly keep to that. Overall it was a successful experiment, a dramatic difference, and I’m pleased.
EDIT, in the years since my phone usage has waxed and waned but remains reasonably low - it’s normally quite a good indicator of my mental health as much as anything