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Smartphone Addiction And How It Hurts Your Productivity

If you're constantly checking it, you're not able to concentrate ...

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Are you one of the many people who spend hours on their smartphone each day? I have been that person; scrolling through emails, facebook and websites, playing Candy Crush and Solitare, messaging on WhatsApp and Messenger ...

If you're constantly checking your phone then you may have smartphone addiction!

If you're constantly checking your phone then you may have smartphone addiction!

copyright: lassedesignen / 123rf

Our smartphones have so much potential that we increasingly use them for more and more things. My friend even controls her home lighting system from her smartphone!

"So why do we get addicted to our smartphones?"

In one blog post I read, they called the smartphone an ‘adult pacifier’. I thought this was amusing yet sadly true. We use them when we are bored, when we are anxious, when we are feeling sad. Anytime we have an unwanted feeling, we pick up the phone to sooth it in some way.

The blog post also states that cell phone addiction is characterised by 4 or more of the following:

  • A need to use a smartphone more and more often in order to achieve the same desired effect

  • Persistent failed attempts to use a smartphone less often

  • Preoccupation with smartphone use

  • Turns to smartphone when experiencing unwanted feelings such as anxiety or depression

  • Excessive use characterized by loss of sense of time

  • Has put a relationship or job at risk due to excessive smartphone use

  • Need for newest smartphone, more applications, or increased use

  • Withdrawal, when smartphone or network is unreachable

  • Experiencing some of the following:

    • Anger

    • Tension

    • Depression

    • Irritability

    • Restlessness

Does that sound like you?

If so, then your smartphone addiction is severely denting your productivity. This is because when we are constantly checking it, we are not able to concentrate on what we are supposed to be doing.

It takes (on average) 20 minutes to get into the ‘concentration zone’ as I call it. If we are picking up our smartphone more often than that time we are losing our ability to concentrate and be productive.

"The negative emotions mentioned above are also not good for our peace of mind and happiness levels!"

Peace of mind is key to our happiness, and any form of addiction disturbs that. Any smoker or drug addict knows how painful it is when you cannot get your fix. Smartphone addiction is the same as it interrupts our mind continually.

So what do we do about it? Well here are three ideas to help you identify and get over your smartphone addiction and become more productive:

  1. Use an app like Moment to track your phone and app usage. You may be surprised at how much time you spend on various apps, and this will help you develop the wish to cut down.

  2. Keep your phone out of reach. This simple technique helps in many ways. For instance, if you plug your phone in at night away from your bed you will not be able to spend the time you should be sleeping scrolling through Facebook.

  3. Stop your notifications. This will stop you being constantly distracted by e-mail, Facebook and game notifications pinging away while you are trying to work.

These simple yet effective ideas have helped me reduce the amount of time I spend on my smartphone and helped make me a lot more productive!

Until next time ...


Would you like to know more?

If you now realise that you may have a degree of smartphone addiction then do get in touch with me on 01858 414226, leave a comment below, or click here to ping over an email and let's see how I can help you.

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About Ellen Willoughby ...


I'm Ellen, Director of All About Quality and All About Productivity. I have over 20 years experience as a professional in the quality world and 17 years as a practising Buddhist. As a result of this, I have a passion for improvement. in business and personal life.

This has led me to productivity and how I can be the best I can by devouring hundreds of blogs and books on the subject and practising meditation and mindfulness techniques. Combined, this has helped me understand what needs to be done to improve the performance of processes and more importantly you.

If you would like to know how I can help you do call me!


01858 414226