If you saw Monday’s blog…you know the tough truth that I spent over 9 days on my phone in a two month period. Literally over a FULL WEEK on my phone. It was tough to swallow that pill but I’m glad I did because it’s opening up a WORLD of inspiration for others to start figuring out how much they are really using their phones, checking social media and getting lost in the scroll versus having their own mindful control over when to log on and connect to their tech devices! I was spending ALMOST 4 hours a day on my phone and guess what…I’m below the “average” phone user because theirs is 4 hours a day. Crazy isn’t it!?
4 hours is half of the average professional work day/shift. Most women in our Boss Ladies & Babies Newsletter survey said that they feel like they don’t have enough time in the day to get it all done, and some of them are truly being intentional and trying to find time…but if we’re being honest, a lot of us are just on our phones too much. I realized the more research I did that it wasn’t a lack of time, because we all have the same 24 hours. The same you’ve had your whole life and always will. It’s how we are using and misusing our time. We have to take some ownership of that from an adult perspective and say we are not being completely diligent about choosing the right tasks and focusing on how to use our time in a truly effective way and instead, a lot of us are intentionally distracting ourselves with our devices. In my blog, I confessed to reasons I pick up my phone but this one is standing out the most to people:
I pick up my phone when I want a false sense of productivity. Checking notifications makes me feel like I’m getting real work done, and of course, that’s not true.
Most of you feel it, too. Doesn’t checking that notification here and there make you feel like you just got something done?
Technically, you did just get something done. But all you did was check to see how many likes and comments you got on something you posted or that another email came in or etc. This is not as important as so many other things on your life list. Your business list. And you’re probably checking it TOO often. And it’s not helping you move forward with real progress at all.
I’m saying this and preaching to myself, too so just realize this is coming from a place of YEP THAT’S ME! And not finger pointing like I’m not completely guilty of this. I’m painfully guilt of it. It took a two month experiment to see how much I was on my phone and realizing that I was losing over a week of my life on there to know that I was NOT allocating my time like a wise, efficient business owner and mama. And I’m a workflow queen! And I have a million lists that are rocking my world and I’m generally on top of things so imagine if I got THIS under control? This one thing holding me back, this one thing really wasting my time?
If I can get my phone use under control, I can do the following:
*Make more eye contact with my girls instead of typing and scrolling in front of their faces. Like really, nothing is usually so urgent I can’t stop, look at them, speak to them properly and then return to sending that message, etc.
*Reduce the amount of times I check social media which I think keeps me happy but actually adds massive amounts of anxiety to me because I feel like I have no control over my excessive checking, then causing guilt, and repeat that several times daily.
*Work on other business tasks and squeeze in more emails, task list checking and completing and other business items when I would have been on my phone doing nothing important.
*Read a couple of pages/chapter of a life-giving book instead of scrolling.
*Sit. Just sit and be still. Be quiet. Be mindful. Connect with my kids, with the goodness of the day. Pray. Journal. Sit with my thoughts. Dream. Create. Anything else.
Here is the MAIN OBJECTIVE over making this a priority in my life right now:
I want to be able to spend every single day as best I can and I know this is the one thing holding me back. I have so many work flow lists. We have family life flow lists. I have a generally simple and clean house and I spend time cooking, picking goodies out of my garden, serving clients and going to the beach with my family. We even have our budget well under control and are thriving on Dave Ramsey’s plan right now. The one thing that is holding MY LIFE back (and most likely yours to some degree) is that I spend too much time on my phone and when I stopped to research and see it for what it was, I realized this is the one thing making me feel the most mom guilt and making me feel like I lack control over something that has become second nature, so I need to retrain myself and put some structure to it!
So what does this little mama always do when something feels beyond control? Well first, I pray and admit that I know I can’t control everything. Hellooooo Type A! I won’t be perfect but I can do what I know to do best and that’s make a LIST or WORKFLOW plan to go alongside this in order to throw some solid plan on it and change the way I’m doing something for the better!
Let’s take some SMALL steps (slow and steady wins the race!) to start figuring out how to help ourselves to not have the urge to check and check and scroll and scroll all day long. It’s going to be hard and you’ll probably have to RESTART a few times but if you want to commit to this like I do, it’s time we jumped in together with this mini challenge! I feel like it’s such a beautiful thing to be able to use social media to stay connected to friends, family and fellow creatives you love and to promote your own business but we CAN do that in healthy moderation!!! 🙂
With an easy Instagram challenge…Thursday, Friday and Monday we’ll take small steps to work toward less phone time, allocating all that spread out mess of phone time to a smaller and more intentional window and to more life. On Monday we’ll release our FREE DOWNLOAD that will get a little more specific and go into more detail after the challenge with more ways to eliminate phone use and ways to choose to be present and consolidate all those excessive checks into only a few a day and how to STILL run a business that consistently shows up in feeds and stays connected to it’s followers, clients and supporters!
Today’s challenge is below but MAKE SURE to sign up for the Boss Ladies & Babies Newsletter in order to receive Friday and Monday’s challenge, and the download will be sent directly to your inbox that way, too!
> Signup for the Boss Ladies & Babies Newsletter by clicking HERE!
Thursday’s Challenge Steps
- Sign up for an app that tracks phone usage such as the MOMENT APP (Click here to see more about Moment). We know that Moment is only available for iPhone but there is a similar option available on Android called Quality Time (click here) that works well, too.
- Choose ONE day this weekend you will go absolutely social media FREE. Saturday or Sunday. You can do this, friend. You can. And you’ll be surprised how you feel at the end of the day…most likely some mixed emotions. No checking or posting. No exceptions unless you have a social media manager who logs on for you so he/she can be your online presence that day, but you can not get on! Make sure to take written or mental notes (I vote written! Get it outta your brain and free up space to not have the pressure to remember anything if you don’t have to. This is why I am addicted to work and life flow lists!) on how you are feeling. Are you happier? Confused? Super anxious? Noticing life a little more clearly? Just get it out and talk about it!
- Post a picture on Instagram TODAY that represents best why you are doing this or who are you doing this for and use hashtag #SaltAirPhoneChallenge. You can mention any real feelings about the subject (I have my phone in my hand around my kids all the time, I am struggling with comparison, I suffer from major FOMO) and post literally anything you want that just has a caption to let us know what’s on your heart. Ironic to post a picture during a phone control challenge? Haha! It seems so…but this is a not a challenge to say goodbye to phones. I know I need mine for business and personal use of course. What I want to do is spend planned, intentional time in limited windows when I’m on there because it would be SO okay to spend 45 min-1 hour total on the phone a day versus 3.75 like I was doing. In posting this picture and hash-tagging, we are CONNECTING to one another and creating a little positive support and community to inspire others who may have no idea that this is pain point in their life until we bring a little light to it…and if you’re intentional with your time, it should only take a couple minutes!
BONUS: Do something non-phone related like read a magazine, some chapters of a book, create a list that would help enhance your life or business. Write a letter or quick love note to someone you adore. Something that doesn’t involve a phone screen that you would normally be taking time up by scrolling and checking!
Remember to sign up for the Boss Ladies & Babies Newsletter to be informed about the rest of the challenge!!!!! 🙂
LOVE YOU GUYS, LET’S DO THIS!
Want to keep up with an Outer Banks mama of three sweet (and oh so wild!) little girls shooting weddings & small business photography while making time for the things that matter most? Click on the links below and let’s connect!🙂