Have you ever watched a movie from years ago, where it was a real sign of power and wealth when a businessman had a truly gargantuan brick-sized phone that he could carry around, to make important calls with, when out in public?

Oh, how times have changed.

These days, we are all more or less addicted to our smartphones, and it’s pretty easy to spend hours a day surfing the web, playing games, toying around with different apps, and sharing photos with our friends and family, using these almost-miraculous devices.

Sometimes, things go too far, and we end up genuinely losing massive amounts of time due to our phone addictions. And it’s not a great look to spend an evening staring at your phone when you’re meant to be socialising with the friends and relatives who are sitting right there in the same room as you.

Here are a few tips for developing a healthier relationship with your phone, so that it’s a benefit your life, rather than a drawback.

Look for deals that allow you more flexibility and freedom

Sometimes, we are put in a weird situation with regards to our phones, because we are signed up to restrictive and long-term contracts, that we’ve often invested a good deal of money into, and that don’t necessarily give us all the benefits would like – especially when travelling.

Signing up to a Sim Only deal, via a company such as https://smarty.co.uk/sim-only can significantly increase the degree of flexibility and freedom you enjoy when using your phone, and makes it easy to switch your Sim card between different phones, as the need and opportunity arises.

This won’t necessarily help you to spend less time procrastinating with your phone, but it can reduce some of the stress and irritation that we often feel in connection to these devices.

Use tools to reduce how much time you spend surfing the web on your phone, and take a more “minimalist” approach

If you find yourself spending huge chunks of time each day surfing the web on your phone, it’s important to realise that those precious minutes and hours could also have been spent doing genuinely meaningful and uplifting things, and pursuing your goals and dreams.

If you’re a chronic Internet-addict and use your phone as a way of getting that “fix,” consider using tools to reduce how much time you spend surfing the web on your phone. Freedom, for example, is a great web blocker app that works both on smartphones, and on computers and tablets, and which can completely lock you out of certain websites – or even the entire Internet – when you know it’s time for a break.

Investigate apps and services that help you to use your phone as the ultimate productivity-boosting device

It’s definitely possible to use your phone as the ultimate procrastination device, but it’s also possible to use your phone as the ultimate productivity-boosting device, too.

In order to use your phone in this more positive way, investigate apps and services that can significantly improve your quality of life and productivity in various ways.

You could, for example, look into using a note-taking app such as Evernote, to record your thoughts, access shopping lists, and save interesting articles and photos for later.

You could also use an app such as Todoist, to track your tasks and projects in a series of folders and checklists, so that they are always accessible at a moment’s notice, and so that you can enjoy the ability to reflect on your plans for the day, or week, whenever you have a spare moment.

Another option would be to use an app and service such as Audible, so that you can catch up on your “book reading” in audiobook format, while out on the go.

Cut back on the messenger and social media apps – keep it simple

It’s great that modern phones allow us to be so connected with our friends and family, across vast distances. But, moderation is a good idea, and if you’re signed up to every popular messaging service in the world, you may be overloading yourself with text-based small talk throughout the day, that distracts you, and creates an uneasy sense of claustrophobia.

And then, there’s social media.

Authors such as Adam Alter have written about the ways in which social media platforms often use the principles of the gambling industry, in order to keep us hooked into obsessively checking up on their services. And recent research has suggested that the more you use social media, the more depressed you are likely to be.

Cutting back on the messenger and social media apps on your phone, and keeping it simple, might be a great idea.

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