If you own an iPhone, then you are doubtlessly familiar with the feature called Screen Time.
Even if you do not set limits and restrictions for yourself using Screen Time, which you can find in the settings, you have probably seen the weekly notification pop up that shows you the hard data about your phone usage.
For the writer of this article, that weekly notification would often be over an hour long, sometimes several hours. And that was even after I deleted the “big three” social media platforms: Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. (I never downloaded TikTok, but I still do have a LinkedIn).
What Made My Screen Time So High
The main culprits were YouTube, which always has a just-short-enough video ready to recommend a user, and Google in general—being able to look up anything at any time, find any factoid or go down an information rabbit hole at any whim.
Luckily, I had/have enough self-control to not be jumping onto YouTube or those information rabbit holes while working—this was mostly threatening my free time, which I do not like to waste.
But still, an hour on YouTube or Wikipedia after work, spending a chunk of time just “unwinding” before getting around to reading, or exercising, or whatever I should have been doing, was not as relaxing as I wished.
After enough of these troubling notifications, I decided to take a stand: I would do whatever it takes to spend less time on my phone, and more time doing things that I actually wanted to get done.
Why I Wanted to Cut Down My Screen Time
I think I share an intuition that many people hold, which is that screen time really does have a negative and measurable impact on one’s ability to focus, reason, and creativity. That’s not to mention being able to withstand boredom, a lack of stimulation, and living without immediate gratification, for extended periods of time.
So, a Screen Time notification that places my screen time at 30 minutes or less is what I wanted.
Of course, I am on a screen for much more than half an hour a day, but that is because I am on my computer screen. Most of the time there, I am writing blogs, answering emails, and reading articles and research materials that are relevant to my work.
When I am on my phone, then, I am not really working, which is why spending only about half an hour a day on average, mostly just answering and sending texts and the occasional call, is just what I need.
How the Time Timer Helps
Things really began to change for me once I got the Time Timer MOD visual timer. At first, I wondered who would use such a product in the age of the smartphone alarm, but once I began to consistently use the visual timer, I became a believer.
Having a visual rundown of the timer hits you on an immediate level, as it serves as a visual reminder that time is a precious commodity, and so one must spend it wisely.
And, as it turns out, it has managed to further develop my focus during work. After implementing the Time Timer, I became much more productive in getting down the blogs I need on a tight timeframe, which is important to me because I write two blogs a day.
I can say with confidence that becoming a daily user of the Time Timer MOD timer has made me a more all-around focused and productive individual.
Limiting Access to Certain Time-Sink Websites
In addition to using the Time Timer, the other big tip is to make good use of your devices’ screen time controls. I have blocked YouTube and many other time-sink sites on my phone, and I currently have a “work browser” on my laptop that has similar restrictions, so that I can really only access sites that are directly relevant to my work.
Hopefully these tips can help you manage your screen time to your desire! See below for some more information about Time Timer products.
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