Download the workbook.

➡️Before you start this masterclass and then after you complete it (at least 1 week later), look at your screen time report and note the following:

  • Current daily average:
  • Time spent yesterday:
  • Time spent on social & entertainment apps:
  • Time spent browsing the web & news:
  • Yesterday’s number of pickups:
  • Top 3 apps you used first after pickup:

1. Delete your scroll-inducing apps

Our bad habits often need a drastic shake-up in order to loosen their hold. We all know the feeling of having picked up our phone to text a friend or look something up, but found ourself scrolling feeds or headlines without thinking.

To short-circuit that habit, delete the apps that suck you in. Look at your screen time report to get some hard data about which apps are the real problem.

After watching the lesson, brain dump the benefits of the apps you scroll. You wouldn’t do it if you didn’t get something out of it. What keeps you in the apps, for good or ill? Be honest with yourself and as thorough as you can.

➡️ Set the timer for 5-10 minutes and write as many reasons or benefits for using the apps you’re deleting today.

2. Mind your pickups

How has your attitude, attention, and actions been different because you didn’t have those apps you deleted? What have you noticed about yourself with their absence? What did you turn to for boredom or distraction or connection instead?

➡️ Set the timer for 5-10 minutes and write whatever comes to mind as you consider these questions.

Scrolling mindlessly is often the followup habit after the habit of mindlessly picking up our phone. Studies show that the slightest amount of discomfort, including simply the discomfort of boredom, is enough to trigger our brains to have us reach for the phone. We pick it up before we even realize what the trigger is. It’s a habit. Let’s retrain our habits by focusing on our pickup routines.

➡️Choose at least two times a day you will be in a different room from your phone for at least an hour – and while you’re asleep doesn’t count.

Give your phone an inconvenient charging home and put it away there during dinner and dinner cleanup, during an afternoon quiet reading time, during homeschool lessons, or some other spot in your day where you want your attention fully engaged in the present.

3. Replace, Don’t Eliminate

What did you notice about your habits and attention throughout the day as your patterns were interrupted?

➡️Look at your screen time report. How out-of-hand (or reasonable) are your phone pickups and time spent on your phone?

One mistake we often make when trying to break bad habits is to just work at eliminating them. However, replacement is a better strategy. You can’t just get rid of the junk. You have to bring in the positive, the good, to take up that same space. Nature abhors a vacuum.

What are some good habits that don’t involve the phone you can turn to instead of your phone when you are waiting or tired or bored. Even something as small as getting a glass of water instead of picking up your phone can be a healthy change with unexpected ramifications.

One practice a Simply Convivial member set up for herself was to cover her phone’s screen with a post it that told her to do something else first. “Pray first,” or “Get a drink of water first,” or “Smile first.” – This is a simple strategy to help you become more aware of your choices and make better ones in the moment.

4. Plan & Iterate

Engagement is a metric on social media – how many views, likes, comments a post gets. Let’s move our metric. Let’s not be an engagement number for others, but truly engage first and most with our own lives and in our own situations. We can make it more tactical and doable by keeping a running list.

➡️List 10 tasks you can do that would make you happy to have done but that take no more than 10 minutes. Cleaning out your purse, taking out the garbage, wiping down the fridge are possible options.

Sometimes we think we want a break and a rest, but what will actually recharge us is accomplishing something we can check off in the midst of a day of non-check-off-ablework like parenting.

Try making it a rule to do one thing from your running task list before you pick up your phone.

You might pick up your phone less because you don’t want to get up and do something. But you might also pick up your phone less because you get engaged with your own life and don’t need to live vicariously through others’.

5. Finale – Should you get off social media entirely?