Well, it’s the beginning of a new year (wasn’t that just the other day??) so, as per usual, there’s lots of talk of ‘New year, new me’ and ‘what are your new years resolutions?” etc etc. Now, I don’t really do ‘new years resolutions’ so to speak, but anytime is a good time to want to improve. One thing I DO do tho is listen to Holy Spirit prompting…. and this leads me to this blog. Buckle up peeps… here we go…
Something that has been apparent to me is how much time is spent on our phones. To be fair, there are a lot of logical reasons why this is so. .. Email, banking, camera/photos, calendar, ah duh… the fact that it’s a phone (Ha Ha), your Bible app, YouTube, plus so much more… there’s plenty of reasons we’re on our phones that aren’t necessary. Social media being the most obvious. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a social media girl thru and thru. I have a FB, Insta (actually I have a couple of each) & YouTube channel for crying out loud, but there’s a healthy amount of use, as well as a healthy quality of use. (to do with the quality issue.. just one point peeps… BE KIND ALREADY !!)
Let’s look at a few of these that could be limited, if not eliminated. Emails CAN be checked only on a desktop.. heck, it’s how we used to do it. I actually don’t have my main family email address on my phone, but I do have my personal one on there. The major reason for this is actually purely practical. If there’s an email, say ticket confirmation, or a barcode etc, then I’ll have that go to my phone, simply for ease of access. But, in reality, I COULD own a printer and not need to do this. Personally I don’t find emails to be something that keeps me on my phone anyway, but hey, everyone’s different.
Calendar… Now, same thing, it’s not like a sit there for any length of time looking at my calendar (that’s just stupid), but it is certainly handy if making an appt while out, to be able to see when in fact you’re available for said appointment. I have made the decision this year though to buy a planner and use that also. So that when I’m looking at the week ahead, I can do it in there. Yes, it seems like some double work, but it’s not really. This big planner I’ve begun to use this year is an A4 ‘day to a page’ type, as I wanted to be able to journal in it if desired too. I’ve done some YouTube & blog planning in there, and hope to continue that practice, so when you’re in the planner every day using it, it’s not really an additional thing to be doing to check out what’s in the week ahead.
Camera/Photos.. well, that’s pretty much impossible to not use, or even minimise. It would be one thing if the camera in your phone didn’t take great pictures and video, but the new phones take AMAZING photos now. So in some ways, when using it for that purpose, it’s really just like you’re using a camera. Plus with a FB & insta page to promote, it’s just far too convenient to take your photo on there in 2 steps, you’ve done it. As opposed to downloading photos off your camera to your PC, and then uploading to your page.
OK.. so doesn’t sound like we’re making too much progress at this point, but let’s hit it where it hurts… Personal Social media usage. There’s a really simple way to greatly reduce your time on social media… delete the apps off your phone and only do your social media surfing from your desktop once a day. I do have Instagram on my phone for my business account, and all posts automatically share to my FB business page, so that’s easy peasy. If you don’t want to delete it all together, then simply sign out of it, so that it’s that little bit harder to ‘just jump on for a quick squiz’.
Banking .… I know this one is super doper convenient.. and sometimes actually is necessary (how did we ever survive without it?), but in reality, it’s not too safe to be doing banking from your phone anyway. So, in short, do your best to only do banking from your desktop.
The BIGGEST one that’s been on my heart in this regard is using the Bible App. Just keeping it real… I get hung up on the streak… lol. Yep, I just admitted that. I was literally nearly at 400 days in the app in 2018 and then I went to Europe, lost a day in disappearing day land, and opened the app on landing to that terrible sight of the big fat number ZERO !! Arrrggghhh. Anyway, so I’m listening to Sadie Robertson and going old school and using an ACTUAL BIBLE !!. Thanks Sadie !!! If you wanna hear Sadie’s message, click HERE !! It’s only been a couple weeks, but I LOVE it !! It really is a different experience.
With the Bible app, but also others as well… it’s so easy to be distracted by other notifications….. even if on your phone for something perfectly reasonable. So, my next tip is to turn off your notifications. I don’t have them turned on, even for my business pages. I just check in morning and night… and if I post something, than I can clearly see if something is there that needs addressing.
Another suggestion with the bible reading, which I have found super beneficial, is this… when you kinda don’t have the option to use your actual bible, or for some reason it’s not possible..… use the audio option in the app. I not only found this solved the interruption issues, but I also found that I ‘read’ so much more of the Word since starting this. You’ll have your verse of the day come up each day you go in… but at the bottom it says ‘read entire chapter’… when you’re literally holding your phone in your hand, it’s far too easy to just read that one verse and think you’re good to go. But listen to a chapter a day.. and you’ll be amazed how it’ll boost your day ahead.
Another issue re using the bible app is the bible studies. Now, if it’s going to be the only bible study you do, then of course do the ones on offer in the app… but if I could encourage you in anything.. it’s to do an ACTUAL HOLD IN YOUR HANDS bible study. If it’s got a workbook to go along, then even better… if not, then simply journal.
Watching YouTube… while it’s super easy to catch up on a lil YT on your phone… can I just suggest that you do it on a desktop, or on a tablet where you’re not signed into anything that will cause you to be sucked into other apps. (This applies to reading blogs too… LOL. Are you on your phone right now??? ha ha ) This seems to work really well for me. I don’t even have social media on my tablet….. it’s basically just for YouTube watching really. I actually don’t watch any TV…. the only show I watch is The Crown, so basically I do some binge watching every 2yrs and that’s it. LOL. I prefer to find some really great vlogging families on YT, and follow their lives. It’s way better than watching some fictional show.
For your info… my fave vlogging families are 2 in a Zoo, Alex & Phil Congillere, Loftis party of 6, Grace for the Millers, The Mills Family, & This Gathered Nest. All of these families are really wholesome Christian families, 3 of them being Pastors.
Another thing that keeps us all on our phones is messaging/texting. When did it become ‘uncool’ to actually pick up the phone and RING someone? I’m sure I don’t need to tell you the dangers in misunderstood texts, and what that can lead to. So, all I can say on this one is RING, DON’T TXT. (I know, easier said than done.)
I’m really excited to see what improvement I can see come about though these simply changes… and I’d love to hear how it’s improved your life too.