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Addicted to Apps

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Thursday, 13 August 2015 - Last Updated on August 13, 2015
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It’s becoming more difficult to resist the lure of a smartphone or a tablet’s screen. These gadgets have its own immersive universe. Using it, you can keep in touch with loved ones, play games, and quickly shift to checking a fresh comment from a photo you recently uploaded on your social networks. Once you’ve started, it’s hard to stop. It’s not a very healthy thing to do either.

But it’s no surprise how addicting apps can be. They’re customized, as you only download what interests you. “Me-time” now isn’t just about a good massage or sleeping time. Me-time can also mean “Give me some peace and quiet with my apps and I’ll get back to you later.” That’s not a bad thing, especially when apps do “open your eyes to new experiences, skills, relationships, and even a greater sense of well-being.

So you know that apps can be a bad thing when it does the exact opposite – when it disrupts your work day and contributes to unproductive time, when it cuts you off from communicating face-to-face with friends and family around you, when your eyes begin to feel heavy and you feel a crick in your neck. There are simple ways to stop being addicted to apps, and for these to be effective requires your utmost commitment. If you’re struggling with apps addiction, why not give them a try?

The first thing you can do is to turn off app notifications on your gadget. You may find that whenever your phone buzzes because of a new “like” on a Facebook photo or a message from a favorite game of yours that your lives have been fully replenished, you can’t help but feel compelled to check the app just so that notification bubble disappears. Go to your gadget’s settings and disable notifications. You can do it in baby steps – first, take out the vibrate feature or the sound that alerts you to a new notification coming in. If that helps ease you down, take the next step and remove any notification. That means no “bubbles” on the upper right side of your little app icons whenever new updates come in. This will make you feel more a tease as there doesn’t seem to be any “unfinished” business with any of your apps. You’ll be surprised at how liberating this feels!

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The less apps you have, the less addicted you can be to your gadget. One way to lessen apps is to be vigilant with the apps you download. Before you hit the “Get” button, think to yourself – how reputable and safe is the maker of this app? Read the reviews – not just the top ones, either! Being thorough about the apps you put into your gadget can help streamline the number of apps you install.

Another way to lessen apps is to delete some of the existing ones you have. Think about the games that have hindered your productivity, and consider deleting them. Social media apps can also be thought about – they can be quite immersive as you scroll down and down your feed. Before you know it, half an hour has gone by and it isn’t even your lunch hour. Be honest with yourself and determine which apps aren’t doing you any good. Do you really need five different kinds of games in your smartphone? How important is it to have various social media apps in your tablet? 

Still find it hard to get rid of apps addiction? Request for an intervention. You can talk to your friends and loved ones to ask how your relationship with your gadget has been affecting your relationship with them. Sometimes it’s best to hear it from the folks around you. Children are good at this. They call you out bluntly — “Please stop playing with your phone. Play with me!” Satisfy this request from them before they too begin curious about the apps on your phone and get addicted to their own apps too.

Another simple way to stop apps addiction is to schedule apps-time. The difficulty with resisting apps addiction is that you can have your gadget with you at all times. Be committed and set a time, and a length of time, for you to indulge in your apps. Ten minutes every lunch hour, for example, would be great as your apps indulgence happens during a given break.

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Finally, consider distancing yourself from your gadget, especially our phone. If you are not expecting important phone calls, put the phone in a place where you can’t see it but are assured that it’s there (for safety reasons). “Out of sight, out of mind” might just work for you and therefore curb those app addictions.

Easing yourself from the lure of your gadgets’ screens is doable. But just like any way of dealing with an addiction, it requires honesty and commitment. It can be done! Believe you can simplify your life without the need of constantly checking on your gadget. When you believe it can be done, you can achieve it!

Toni Tiu (148 Posts)

Toni Tiu is a training director, brand strategist, and features writer. She is the author of Wifely Steps, a blog that started out to help newlyweds adjust to married life. It has since evolved into a home and parenting blog where she writes about things close to her heart – good eats, good reads, and the little things that make everyday happy.


About Toni Tiu

Toni Tiu is a training director, brand strategist, and features writer. She is the author of Wifely Steps, a blog that started out to help newlyweds adjust to married life. It has since evolved into a home and parenting blog where she writes about things close to her heart – good eats, good reads, and the little things that make everyday happy.

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