this might not be a revelation to anyone else, but i feel it's important for me to acknowledge it. at the end of every week, my iphone gives me a summary of my average screen time - and it's both disgusting and embarrassing.
there have been times where my average screen time has been over 4.5 hours. 4.5 hours?! that's insane. if i was asked in the morning where i was going to find 4.5 hours to sit on my phone, i couldn't answer the question. the reality is, this accumulation of time is not one big chunk - they're isolated periods, usually when we're supposed to be doing something else; driving, working, watching tv, or engaging in conversation.
a few weeks ago i asked myself how i could become more present in my relationships. and the answer was simple: less phone, more connection. since then, i have turned off notifications to my social media apps, i've set time restrictions on those same apps, and i leave my phone in the kitchen overnight.
having analysed my data since implementing these changes, it's highlighted that messages occupy the majority of my screen time. and it's for that reason i am experimenting, again, on myself and my life. i am now no longer using text messages for conversational purposes. if i need something, i'll call. if i want to respond to your message, i'll call. or, better yet, i'll organise a time for us to catch up and chat. so please don't take it personally when i don't reply - i'm trying to add more value to my life. to replace the dopamine i've become addicted to with oxytocin - the chemical necessary for connection.
i'm not perfect and i don't anticipate my implementation of this will run perfectly either. but the point is, i know our lives were not meant to be lived through a screen and unless we make conscious changes to override the addiction we have to our cellular device, we're going to continue missing life and being chronically distracted. i want to be more present. more aware. and more connected to what matters most - people.