It’s a well-known fact that our smartphones were designed to be addictive, and phone companies’ success at achieving that has many people calling smartphone addiction a growing threat to public health. Even if you don’t want to admit it, you probably know this from your own usage. Perhaps you have even tried to limit how often you use your phone, but it’s always tougher than it sounds.
If so, you’re not alone. As a result, you, like so many others, likely experience the unpleasant side effects of too much phone time: distraction, depression, anxiety, and neck pain – just to name a few.
As someone who spends a lot of time in front of her laptop, I can attest to these side effects, which is why I’ve engaged an app that shuts down all my social media sites for allotted amounts of time when I need to focus on writing.
It was eye-opening to discover how hard it was for me at first. I often clicked out of my work and tried to scroll Facebook, only to find it blocked.
According to WIRED, a similar app is coming to your Apple or Android device, and it may be just what you need to get over the hump to a phone-free dinner. It’s called Flipd, and its aim is to reduce the amount of time you spend looking at your phone, which, hopefully, could help break the habit for good.
For those of you who can’t fully commit, you can use the app’s “Light Lock” feature, which is displayed on your main screen and runs on a timer. It doesn’t shut off access to any of your apps — it just serves as a subtle reminder that you’re not supposed to be opening them.
If you want/need to turn the timer off, you can, but Flipd makes you click a button that shames you with a “Yup, I’m weak” admission.
If that’s not enough motivation to keep you on task (honestly, it wouldn’t be for me), then you can engage a “Full Lock” mode, which does prevent you from clicking on any downloaded apps for the duration of the set time. However, you can still text and make phone calls, if you’re worried about safety.