Week 2

It’s time for your weekly dose of Tech Freedom inspiration! I sure hope that you were able to at least experiment with last week’s ideas.

I want to ground today’s content with an essential ingredient to creating change — your WHY.

I know, I know. Sounds a little superfluous and you might want to skip straight to today’s Tip and Challenge. But I encourage you to stop for a second and watch today’s video:

Prefer to read or listen? Click below to download the complete module (includes video transcript) or download the video audio.

There are so many reasons that you are doing this program. But what’s your biggest driver? It’s important to connect with it. And own that it’s important to you.

Perhaps it’s the lack of real-life conversation that’s happening in your life?

Maybe the impact on your parenting — you want to set a great example of digital habits for your children?

Perhaps you can sense the constant distraction and want to be more present in your life.

Or maybe your why is to make your down time TRUE down time, because you need a little more stillness in your life?

Whatever it is, connect with it. It will make it much easier to stay committed to the changes you are going to make.

Remember this is only the second week of an eight-week program. We continue to build on new habits each week. Keep taking these small steps. Your WHY really wants you to!

And you deserve it.

Here are this week’s ideas:

Tech Tip — Let’s Tidy Up!

I hear so many people complaining about the crap they see on their socials, saying that it gives them that horrible feeling of ‘comparison-itis’, or that the people and Pages they see add nothing to their life.

But here’s the thing: aside from sponsored posts, you are seeing exactly what you choose to see.

So is it time for a clean up? Do you need to get brutal with the Groups you are in, the People and Pages you like? Your friends list?

When you do jump on social media (because remember, this isn’t about quitting completely, it’s about experiencing freedom with your technology) you deserve for the experience to at least feel good. Stay tuned for ideas on how to limit the time you spend on there, but for now, let’s focus on making the experience a good one.

So many of our Small Steps Members have chosen to remove their access to all Facebook Groups aside from a few, and the relief they feel is tangible. It also means you are far more likely to see content from Groups that matter to you — like the Membership group, haha!

So spend some time curating your feeds. Then revel in those feelings of spaciousness and clarity when you’re done. It’s like when you finally clear out the messiest room in your house — Ahhhhhhh! The sweet, sweet relief! 😉

Try these tasks:

1. Unfollow People, Pages and Groups that do not resonate with you.

2. Unsubscribe from email lists that you are subscribed to and no longer want to hear from. This might take a little time, but will ultimately save you hours of distraction.

3. Unlike ‘Friends’ that trigger you or who you have no interest hearing from.

If you are worried about insulting someone, then remember you have a few options:

When you Unfriend you are cutting all ties.

The Take a Break function offers multiple choices of connection. For details click here.

Unfollow means you will not see their posts, but will remain friends (so the person in question will not know anything’s changed).

While we’re in “tidy up” mode, here’s another action you can take…

Extra (optional) tip

If you use Gmail and your phone shows a little red dot that says “6,798” (as in, unopened emails!) then immediately follow these instructions:

Iphone: Go to your inbox → click edit in the top right hand corner. Click “Check all” and then “Mark all as Read”

AndroidGo into Mail App > hold finger down on any email to bring up the tickbox selector > tick the top box to select all > press the envelope button in the right hand bottom corner

Those little red dots might seem innocent enough, but click here to read a cool article about the impact they have on our brains.

I loved this section:

What’s so powerful about the dots is that until we investigate them, they could signify anything: a career-altering email; a reminder that Winter Sales End Soon; a match, a date, a “we need to talk.” The same badge might lead to word that Grandma’s in the hospital or that, according to a prerecorded voice, the home-security system you don’t own is in urgent need of attention or that, for the 51st time today, someone has posted in the group chat.

Dots are deceptively, insidiously simple: They are either there or they’re not; they contain a number, and that number has a value. But they imbue whatever they touch with a spirit of urgency, reminding us that behind each otherwise static icon is unfinished business. They don’t so much inform us or guide us as correct us: You’re looking there, but you should be looking here. They’re a lawn that must be mowed. Boils that must be lanced, or at least scabs that itch to be picked. They’re Bubble Wrap laid over your entire digital existence.

Weekly Challenge - Phone Central

The research says that for most smartphone users, their phone is usually less than one metre away from their body — At.All.Times!

Like a bad smell, my phone would move with me from room to room in the house. So it was near me while I was making dinner, while working (as I work from home), while I was folding washing, playing with my kids... It was always there.

That is, until we created a ‘Phone Central’ in our house — aka somewhere for our phones to be placed when we walked in the door.

As you can see, it’s not fancy — it’s an old cap sitting on the cabinet as you walk in our front door! It’s simple, but it does the most important thing: it works.

Having a home for my phone has made so much difference to my life. So have a think: where can you put your phone so you can hear it if it rings, but not constantly have it in arm’s reach?

The benefit to having a Phone Central is that it’s taking the phone out of your sphere of awareness, so you can get back to being in the moment. And stop feeling so distracted. If you can, set yourself a time for when you can go back and check it — or else just leave it for as long as you can!