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Written by Vitality Clinician Jonny Kibble
Tips on maintaining a healthy relationship with your mobile phone

Our phones are amazing. They connect us with family and friends across the globe, keep us up to date on current events and can also inspire and educate us with content through social media. With 3.03 billion social media users worldwide1 each with 5.54 accounts on average2 there is plenty going on online.
However, our phones and social media can also take up our attention, cause unwelcome distractions and only usually provides us with a ‘best bits’ edit of people’s lives. This can make us feel inadequate, agitated and unable to concentrate even if we sometimes don’t realise it.

In the workplace it is important to be able to concentrate on the task at hand. Whether this be writing an important email or creating a presentation. Usage of mobile phones while completing other tasks either at work or outside of work can shorten your attention span3.

Performing well at work also requires you to be alert and fully rested. Social media can adversely affect how well you sleep. A study from 2015 investigated the effect of bedtime mobile phone use on sleep and found that those who used the phone after lights out took longer to fall asleep, had worse sleep, more disturbances during sleep and then therefore felt worse during the day time4.
To keep on top of everything at work and in your life outside work, take a look at our top seven tips below:
  • Turn your phone on aeroplane mode while at work so it distracts you less
  • Check your phones only at set times, say at lunchtime or at set break times; that way you can fully concentrate on the tasks that require your immediate and full attention
  •  Try a social media fast of some variety: click HERE for the Royal Society of Public Health’s current Scroll Free September initiative for some help (you don’t have to give up cold turkey)
  • Instead of looking at your phone on the tube, pull out a good book
  • Try some mindfulness exercises and be in the moment instead of filling free time with scrolling
  • Stop using your mobile phone at least an hour before bed to begin to wind down
  • Put your phone in another room while you sleep so you’re less likely to check it during the night.
1Hootsuite Q3 2017
2Globalwebindex Q4 2014
3Consumer Insights, Microsoft Canada, 2015
4Exelmans, L. and Van den Bulck, J., 2016. Bedtime mobile phone use and sleep in adults. Social Science & Medicine, 148, pp.93-101