And the Phone Commandments
by Hans Onome.
One thing to remember in reading all health articles: there is more right with you than is wrong with you. So keep believing in yourself, do the work with a smile, and keep those you love close. Akpojotor: where there is life there is hope.
It's a paradox of life that the technologies we use to make life easier make other things more difficult in the long run. Take chairs, for example. We can't imagine life without them, but most of us have lost the ability to sit on the floor criss-cross applesauce. Shod feet and sitting through life have given us poor posture and chronic inflexibility. Forget those popular body shapes: pear, apple, square, or triangle. We're all becoming chairs!
And since you're probably sitting right now: shoulders back, tuck your chin, brace your core. See if you can hold that for a minute and don't hold your breath; breathe normally.
If we could only still squat like this little guy.
This, of course, is the way we used to sit long before we got fancy. But neither shoes nor chairs were designed to addict us. The smartphone and its primary pathogen, social media, are different stories. They are deliberately gamified to keep us swiping.
And what gets swiped? Yikes. Other than our identities, our energy, focus, and time.
Has this ever happened to you? You're looking at your phone for something specific, and then blip! Where did the time go? What were you doing before? Fifteen-plus minutes have slipped by along with your focus. Argh! You've been tricked by the algorithm yet again - deliberately distracted! The devil on your shoulder has become the cell phone in your pocket.
Remember this acronym about your smartphone's ulterior motives and tricky games.
DUMB: Distractions Undermine My Best.
When people create goals or resolutions, they usually forget to plan for the inevitable distractions that come their way. How much time spent with your phone could be redirected to writing your book, walking outside, meditating, or meal prepping? According to national averages, 5.4 hours! That's a lot of dumbing down, and lots of people exceed that routinely.
So along with planning our goals, we also need a plan to maintain energy, focus, and time for what matters most by reducing distraction.
How about adding a short addendum to your goals with your own Phone Commandments?
Here are a few to get you started. You fill in the blanks.
Thou shall limit my mobile screen time to ____hours daily.
Thou shall not use the phone before ___am nor after ___pm.
Thou shall charge my phone at night outside of my bedroom.
Try these for starters and tailor them to fit your situation.
Lastly, I say this all the time, usually twice for good measure. If you're reading this, there is more right with you than "wrong" with you. Keep believing in yourself, do the work with a smile, and keep those you love close.
Akpojotor: where there is life, there is hope.
Until next time. Thanks for reading. ~𝛿
Hans is an ICF-certified executive coach at Inner Confidential, specializing in mental fitness and methodologies for healthy organizations, and a NASM CPT specializing in weight loss and behavior change at the SoFit Network.