Two days ago, a friend offered to watch my kids for a couple of hours. Four weeks from my due date and in the middle of a renovation, I needed some down time to rejuvenate.
When I arrived, I decided my best use of that time was to exercise first then run an easy errand in her neighborhood. As I went on a walk, I brought my phone to keep track of the time.
Then, I noticed something.
I noticed for the first half of the walk that even though I was by myself–with no kids, no to dos, and no agenda– I kept interrupting myself!!
I wanted to let my mind wander but every time I glanced at my phone to check the time, I was distracted by a text or a notification. Even when there wasn’t a text or a notification, I recognized that I was bracing myself to resist being distracted and to prepare to refocus.
Then, I remembered.
Halfway through my walk, I decide those I was texting could wait half an hour to hear from me, and I clicked the “Settings” button and moved the little slider next to Airplane Mode from Off to On.
I immediately felt the expanse in my being. My mind cleared. My shoulders relaxed. I immediately knew I was alone and had uninterrupted time to just “be.”
This is why I love Airplane Mode.
Let’s talk about three more ways that you can use Airplane Mode to clear some space in your time and your life.
Give your phone a bedtime. Choose a time at night to set your phone aside and to be alone in solitude or to connect with those you love. What would you do with the extra time? Sleep? Read? Think? Be? Talk?
I just heard yesterday that a guy gave his wife a Valentine that said, “I could not have picked a better person to lay beside at night checking our social feeds.” Ugh!!!
Give your phone a wake time.
One of my favorite professional organizers, Julie Morgenstern, wrote a book entitled, “Never Check E-mail in the Morning.” She wrote her book before the rise of social craziness. Today, I would need my title to be, “Never Check E-mail, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Facebook Feed and Local Sale Posts, Messenger, and the Rest of My Notifications in the Morning.” She suggests this because what we do first thing in the morning truly sets the tone for the entire day.
Instead of checking notifications in the morning and living responding to everyone else’s priorities, let’s live from the inside out proactively–beginning in the earliest moments of the day. I am actually considering purchasing an “old fashioned” alarm clock this month so I am completely removed from my phone when I wake in the morning.
Give your phone some break time.
Not only is it unhealthy for our brains to constantly be “on call” 24/7, it is also extremely unproductive. When we are working in our best state of “flow,” allowing ourselves to be interrupted and to provide a quick response to something unrelated can cause us to lose up to twenty minutes of productivity…per interruption.
When you really need to be productive–which is hopefully very often–try putting your phone on Airplane Mode and note the changes you experience in your results.
Time management guru, Kevin Kruse, has formulated a 3-2-1-0 method for responding to message requests. 3 times a day, he sets aside 21 minutes to get his inbox down to 0. Perhaps this method or another one will work for you. The important thing to remember is that you will be most productive when you schedule and protect your time to focus.
Unplugged is the New Connected.
Because of all of the brain science behind taking time to think time, we at Think Time like to say that “unplugged is the new connected.” But even plugged in but on Airplane Mode can be a major transformation!
Try these Airplane Mode accommodations and let me know how it goes!
Christine M. Wilson, LPC
Think Time Life Leadership System
Use your whole brain to plan your whole life.
Shop now at think-time.com.