I deleted social media apps, including YouTube and Instagram from my phone and focused on what’s important.
I’ve been spending more than 3 hours a day watching YouTube videos and browsing Instagram feed alone. That’s more than 21 hours a week!
People on average spend 3 hours and 35 minutes on their phones every single day. I wrote about the dark side of social media back in January.
Now is the time to stop wasting so much time and focus on life instead.
Day 1 of social media detox
I woke up at 6:30, grabbed my phone and automatically clicked on Instagram icon. It wasn’t there anymore. I took a cold shower as part of my morning ritual (I’ve been taking cold showers since January and it’s been great) and then I headed to my desk.
I sat down, planned my day and checked my phone again shortly but remembered that I quit social media and put my phone down.
There was a pile of books that I ordered from Amazon, and a couple of old university books that I wanted to read a long time ago. I grabbed one book and spend an hour reading it.
Then my wife woke up and we had a breakfast together. Then I started working.
My daily screen time reduced from almost 4 hours down to 2 hours on the first day of social media detox. Although, I had a conference call for about an hour.
I spent one extra hour reading, I was more focused during the day but I kept thinking about the detox.
Last year I turned off all notifications on my phone and never missed anything important.
It doesn’t mean that I didn’t use my phone, I still listened to podcasts on Spotify, checked email and sent messages in messaging apps. It was just a first day in a long time when I didn’t watch any videos on YouTube or opened Instagram.
I woke up at 6:30, grabbed my phone and turned the alarm off. Then I spent another hour in bed. It was raining outside so I decided to run tomorrow.
During the day I was more focused and productive. My wife and I recorded a new episode for our YouTube channel. I also finished one of the client projects.
I spent 1 hour and 50 minutes on my phone, which is 2 hours less than my average screen time. Most of the time I was reading, replying to messages and listening to podcasts on Spotify.
It’s Thursday. I woke up at 6:30 and had a cold shower as part of my morning routine.
My phone started to feel more like a tool, rather than a key part of my day life. I spent 2 hours and 11 minutes in total, still almost 2 hours less than the average time.
If I’m at home, I’m no longer grabbing my phone every time I go to the kitchen or drinking coffee. I take one the books I’m reading instead.
Social media detox also makes me more focused, while I’m reading a book. I pay attention to details and don’t check my phone every 10 minutes as I used to.
It’s Friday today. My daily screen time was 2 hours and 41 minutes. Significantly longer than yesterday. Only because I spent more than an hour on Google Hangouts.
I’m planning to reduce my phone usage during the weekend, as I’ll be spending more time outside.
Day 5-6 (weekend)
It’s been a week since I deleted social media apps on my phone. The day I started my weekly screen time was 27 hours and 20 minutes. I can proudly say that removing Instagram and YouTube apps from my iPhone reduced my weekly screen time by 50%!
My new daily average screen time is 1 hour 52 minutes. Down from 3h 54m. I’m getting my time back and it’s working.
There’s still a problem of random phone grabbing but I’m no longer clicking on social media app icons. I spend most of the time reading Medium, chatting, checking mail, listening to podcasts and tracking my running progress.
My screen time for that day was 1h 39m. Below the new average, which is good news. I’m still doing a lot of reading on my phone. I should use Amazon Kindle instead.
Life without social networks is starting to feel normal. There’s no lack of information, I didn’t miss fire in Notre-Dame or the latest Premier League results.
Screen time for today was 1 hour and 53 minutes.
Today I spent 59 minutes using my phone. It’s the first time my screen time dropped below one hour. Small steps count.
People who say they don’t have enough time to do something are just lazy or unmotivated. You can easily allocate 1-2 hours just by quitting social media on your phone.
I spend 1 hour and 15 minutes on my phone. Mostly in messaging apps. They’re evil. Most of the time people want a hear a reply from you. It’s better than regular calling though.
It’s not just about having more time, it’s also important to have a goal a reason why you’re doing this. Some people can easily regain their 1-2 hours by quitting social media but easily spend these two hours on something unproductive or useless.
It’d be a lot easier to stay motivated if you enjoy what you’re doing more than anything. The same applies to this 30-day challenge. It feels good that I can finally read books and spend more time running instead of scrolling Instagram feed.
I’m not going to quit social media forever. No, I can download Instagram and YouTube apps after the challenge. What I’m really hoping that will happen is this. I’ll keep those apps away from my phone but whenever I need to post something I’ll just download an app, use it and then delete it again.
By the way today I spent 1 hour and 43 minutes on my phone.
Can’t wait for tomorrow! Stay tuned for my progress.