43,440.00 Seconds Less

Or a difference of little over two hours.

Hello and a warm welcome from me, the President of the Procrastination Club, honorary member of the Intrinsic Motivation-Lackers Association. All jokes aside, I would like to start of by saying that neither the digital nor the analogue is inherently better or worse than the other. Last week I dared myself to limit my phone usage. And not to be dramatic but it was A Thing™.

Monday was the worst, because I was way to focussed on keeping my hours low. Which is a sure-fire way to make sure that you keep thinking about it, think the pink elephant effect. I actually used the time in between classes to do some homework. That is not to say that limiting phone usage automatically leads to more productivity, but it is definitely true for me. It takes a way some of the distraction and you no longer have to do it yourself (not true of course, but it felt that way).

I worked quite a lot on Wednesday, so that left little time to grab my phone since that would be rude.

On Thursday, this challenge definitely lead to something new; productivity. I have four hours to kill between my lecture and workgroup. And this week, I have spent the entire four hours behind my laptop working on the homework for Hacking the Humanities (another minor course). I will be honest and say that I probably would not have been so determined to finish the assignment if I had not put away my phone.

The weekend was spent working and wasting my time on a rediscovered vice, Wattpad. The app is riddled with ridiculous badly written “stories” and most of it is targeted to 15-yearolds… But I could not just whitelist it, so there you go. I felt that it would be too much time to just get rid of. I did however whitelist the Spotify app, since I wasn’t sure if it would could the time it was active in the background which would have a severe impact on the total hours spent.

This pie chart (sorry Info-Vis’ers) is automatically generated by an app called My Phone Time. It shows my usage in percentage per category. The other image shows a screenshot of the app called Screen Time, this is the same app I used last week to show my outrageous phone usage.The drastic difference, going from 31h 44 min to 19h 40 min, can be attributed to not Netflixing during commute, since that is usually 4 days a week, 2 hours a day so 8 hours in total. I also restricted phone usage during this time. And if I’m being completely honest, I did up the usage of other devices. However, I promise that it wasn’t that much that it compensates for the one-third reduction.

So, it worth it? (Saying it like that makes it feel like something way more drastic than it actually was.) But yes, it was definitely worth it. I’m still an dependent on my phone and other devices, but not overly boomer-humour so. Take the phone diet for a spin and see for yourself what effects it has on your mood and productivity.

Thank you for reading and good luck with your own endeavours!