When watching the Walking Dead I often wonder if smart phones are the real Zombie Apocalypse. People wandering sidewalks aimlessly with their heads down…
The vast majority of us have all fallen into a trap, looking to our cell phones for satisfaction. There are plenty of articles on smartphones and unhappiness. When did smartphones become more than a useful tool to help us manage our lives?
The answer to that is… The phones and apps are designed to be addictive.
So you should get rid of your smartphone right?
That might be an overreaction, maybe instead we can view all the notifications as potential interruptions. With this view it is easy to be more mindful of what notifications we allow and when we allow them.
My phone lives on silent with vibration unless I’m expecting an important call. This way not every call, text, email or app notification is an interruption to me or annoyance to those around me.
Say No to Notifications
Apps on your phone are designed to interrupt and get you to use the app. Don’t be mad at the apps, instead take charge and alter the notification settings. I’ve found for me personally only email, calendar, text and phone calls warrant making a buzz. News, Sports, Social Media can all be consumed when you want, not when the app wants you to.
Do Not Disturb
Unless it is an extreme emergency I do not want want my phone to buzz, light up or make any noises from 11pm – 7am the next day. Both Apple and Android have Do Not Disturb features. You can set this up to allow certain contacts to be able to bypass if they call several times in a row.
Notifications by Device
Do you need to receive the same text message on your phone, computer, tablet and watch? My iPad gets used mostly for watching movies and tv while traveling or right before bed. Therefor it has no communication of any kind setup, no notifications at all just pure enjoyment.
No One Size Fits All
I think it is fair to say that not everyone needs ever notification on by default. However you may find that what I’ve described above is not ideal for you, that is completely okay. The idea is to experiment and find what works best to help you be interrupted less and enjoying your surroundings more.Tyler Lastovich