How many retweets did your funny one-liner on Twitter get? Did someone comment on your new display picture yet? How many hearts on your dinner post on Instagram? Did Zomato just flash a new irresistible combo offer on your screen? It’s hard not to get sucked into the world of social media and innumerable apps that make our lives easier. Harder yet is not compulsively checking the notifications that bombard our smartphone.
A recent research by the Florida State University only validates what we suspected all along — notifications mess with our concentration and hamper work even if they were not responded to. According to the study, participants are found to be three times more likely to make mistakes when their phones were vibrating or ringing due to notifications.
Clinical psychologist and author of Beating the Blues, Seema Hingorrany, tells you how to resist the impulse to look at your phone every five minutes.
1. Switch off notifications for apps that might not need immediate attention (namely, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram). This will reduce the urge to check for updates or respond to status messages. Cut out the fluff; keep notifications on for what’s essential.
2. Dedicate intervals and durations for notifications. And then stick to it. This will inculcate ‘phone discipline’.
3.Your self-worth is not tied to social media, so you don’t need to upload things to prove how funny/witty/artistic/clued in you are. So, the next time you go to the hottest restaurant in town, rather than uploading a photo, talk about it when you meet friends. Just like old times.
4. Take a phone break in order to protect yourself from information overload. It is important to introduce some calming techniques. An array of meditation tools are available these days. Engaging yourself into something therapeutic, such as baking or gardening, may help.
5.Place your phone upside down while working or during dinner. It helps with not getting distracted. There have been cases where checking the phone too often has caused martial problems, as one of the spouses would be on their phones instead of enjoying a family meal together.