The constant bombardment of notifications were getting to me and I hadn’t even realized it. I never registered how a simple notification could distract me from my daily activities. When someone Snapchatted me, I immediately looked at it and responded. When someone posted on my Facebook wall, I would instantly stop what I was doing to look. I did this because I welcomed the distraction, at least in that moment. I would be writing an essay or completing some reading for college when my phone vibrated and that would be my “cue” to take a break. After 20 minutes spent mindlessly scrolling through Instagram, I would wake up and realize how much time I’d wasted. Something had to change.
I turned off my Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat notifications and I’m never going back.
After turning my notifications off, I am able to decide what hour (or two) of my day goes into checking these apps. Now I rarely open Snapchat and only open Instagram for a small period of time each day. I am more focused on my work, my reading, my meals, etc. I am more present when spending time with friends and family. To be honest, I still check my phone a lot, but at least now there aren’t any notifications prompting me to unlock my phone. I’ll look at it for a moment and then set it back down.
Maybe you’re not like me. You receive these notifications but you don’t bother to look at them. You don’t let them distract you. Maybe you’re able to ignore the notifications until you choose to view them. Even so, I encourage you to turn them off for one week. You can always turn them back on.