10 Things To Do Instead Of Getting On Your Phone
I will be the first to admit that I love the convenience of having a smartphone BUT there is a dark side to this device. The phone can be a time thief! Mindless scrolling on our phone rob us of time and hinder our productivity. If we allow, it can also have a negative impact on our ability to have real connections with those we love. Below I have compiled a list of 10 things you can do instead of getting on your phone.
- Read the hardcopy of a book. Yes, we can read a lot of things online, but there is something to be said about having the physical book in front of you. Did you know that studies have shown that when you read offline you comprehend and retain more of the material? Looking for book recommendations? Of course, at the top of my list is the Bible. I recently read this great Christian fiction and I’m currently reading, Servant Leader. I also recommend my recently published book, Lessons Learned Along The Way: A 40 Day Devotional. If you would prefer not to buy books, your local library is a great resource.
- Exercise. Get out and move, you will be happy you did. If you have a gym membership, great…use it! However, if you don’t have one, don’t use that as an excuse not to exercise. My main means of exercise is walking, and it has proven to be very effective.
- Have a real conversation with those around you. It is so easy to be in a room filled with people and hide on your phone-how tragic! We miss out on opportunities to connect with others because we are consumed with watching other people’s fake realities on our phone. We long for what we THINK they have and miss out on what is right in front of us. Challenge yourself to be intentional about putting your phone away at different times in the day and connect with those around you.
- Clean a specific area in your home that you have avoided. We all have that one area in our home we would prefer not to clean. At some point and time, we should stop looking up different cleaning schedules and strategies on Pinterest and implement what we have been researching for months. I’m just saying! It is so fulfilling when you can complete a task you have been avoiding, so put the phone down and start cleaning!
- Sit and brainstorm your goals. It is so easy to sit and waste time on our phones watching other people live out their goals and we forget to set our own. Ask yourself, “What are my short- and long-term goals?” Have I met the goals that I have set at the beginning of the year, am I taking steps toward meeting those goals? What are some things that distract me? How can I get back on track? Reflection is a great form of personal accountability.
- Pray & Meditate. It is so calming when I sit in God’s presence meditating on His word and speaking to Him. While I enjoy listening to different things on YouTube and various podcast, this should not consume my day. I need to spend more time talking and listening to God, the one who knows it all, rather than human “experts.” When I spend too much time on my phone in the name of relaxation, I feel drained and exhausted. However, time spent with the Lord brings peace and focus to my day.
- Cook. Get in the kitchen and cook a healthy meal. We may find ourselves in the drive through and eating a lot of process foods because we waste time on our phone and lament that we didn’t have time to cook dinner. I am not anti-eating out, but this should be an exception, not the rule. Get in the kitchen and have some fun. Work with your hands and don’t be afraid to experiment!
- Play A game. Believe in or not, there are many games to play that are not on your phone! Have fun with those around you. Break out the old board and card games and have a good time laughing and playing together…well, that is if you are not playing with super competitive people.
- Do Nothing. We are often overstimulated and are always ON. If we have a free second, we grab our phones and start scrolling as if there is something wrong with being still. I once heard someone say that we should give ourselves the gift of boredom. Be still, clear your mind and relax!
- Go to bed. We stay up longer than we should because we carry our phones with us to bed. This is a bad idea! Scrolling on our phone unsettles us instead of calming us down. The research is there to prove it. The artificial light on the phone has a negative impact on our ability to have sound sleep. Let us also consider how the constant influx of information on the screen keeps our mind swirling right before bed. We live in a generation where many suffer from anxiety, and constant phone usage is a huge contributor to this dilemma. Do yourself and favor, get off the phone before you get in the bed and give yourself the gift of rest!
I would love to hear from you. What do you do instead of getting on your phone?
About the Author
Anika Jones is a speaker and author of the book Lessons Learned Along The Way: A 40 Day Devotional. She blogs about faith and family at LivingForLater.com and posts weekly videos on her YouTube channels, Living For Later (@livingforlater) and Living Life Now (@livinglifenow). Anika loves speaking about developing intimacy with God and understanding who we are in Christ. She serves alongside her husband in ministry. They live in Illinois with their 6 children.