Every day we spend a good couple of hours on our phones. It’s inevitable – what else are we supposed to do in the moments between working, cooking, sleeping, and spending time with our loved ones?
The nine minutes the pasta is on the stove, or the moment you’re in the bathroom and really don’t want to read in the ingredients in your air freshener – in these moments our phones come to the rescue. But there’s also the daily commute, time spent on the couch, a time when anyone over fifty would point out the fact that you’re on your phone rather than reading a book or playing sudoku.
The funny thing is – you can read books and play sudoku on your phone, but most people don’t. They scroll through Instagram. It’s possible, though, to see our digital companions not as possible hindrances to our lives, but rather as tools that when used correctly can be very powerful. Here are a few ways you can use your phone productively.
I’m an evangelist when it comes to podcasts. They’re powerful educational tools with which you can gain massive insight into topics that interest you. I’m a politically minded person – so I listen to a lot of daily discussions shows where speakers dissect the day’s events and unpack them whilst not shying away from difficult questions.
For the uninitiated, 99% Invisible gives incredible insight into the worlds of design, architecture and urban planning, and how it affects our lives in unexpected ways.
Learn A Language
While apps like Duolingo say they can teach you a language, their format means this lofty goal isn’t quite yet achievable without a dedicated human teacher. However, apps like these can grow your interest in learning a new language and get you to the point where you’d considered investing in real-life lessons.
Play Mentally Stimulating Games
For the prior-mentioned bathroom sessions, consider keeping a game on your phone that’s simple, not too distracting, and employs clear problem-solving as part of its mechanic. I’m a big fan of sudoku, and now I can see all my friends progress as we’re all using the same app. It’s a little nerdy, but oh-so-satisfying. Alternatively, you can check out Black Lotus Casino for ultra-satisfying real money games.
When I find myself on Instagram, I may as well make it worthwhile for a later date. So in between responding to DMs and watching stories, I look for images I can save to my various moodboards. These boards help me in many different creative spheres from filmmaking to writing inspiration to design, and I see these collections of images as fairly invaluable. They are, after all, the result of countless hours of research.
All in all, I think public perception of mobile phone usage is slowly changing as people realise the possibilities and opportunities they bring to our lives, but there’s still the risk of getting lost in what gen z has termed an “endless scrolling loop”. We hope these tips will help you stay focused and allow you to use this time productively. Scrolling doesn’t have to be a guilty pleasure.