6 Things to Do instead of Being on Your Phone

I have really been convicted recently of how easy it is to live distracted, yet ineffective. I have come to realize that it takes intentionality to not mindlessly overuse technology. If I just do what comes easy, what doesn’t take any brain power, I reach for the phone, surf social media, scroll through blogs, etc.

But it’s not who I want to be. There is more to this life than keeping up with everyone’s statuses, and reading the inspiring posts, and following the celebrities and fitness gurus.

Last night I had an epiphany. I had a nice long supper break ahead of me at work, and I was about to do something mindless like sitting at the computer and surfing when I heard the still small voice say, “Come away from the noise. You need something else more right now.” I grabbed my Bible and journal, turned my phone on airplane mode (I still had my work phone on for work calls or family emergencies) and proceeded to have a leisurely, quiet supper digging into the Word of God, quieting my spirit, reflecting, meditating, and praying. And it was SO REFRESHING!

Media can be a powerful tool, but in those times when we need refreshment, “escape”, or rejuvenation, media isn’t usually the best option.

Would you join me on a journey of freedom from the pull of the noisy unnecessary?

Try one of these next time you have some alone time and are tempted with the “media escape”:

1. Read the Word

The Word of God is rich. I am amazed at the new truths that are always there no matter how many times I read it! I am currently reading in Job, and have really been amazed at all the nuggets of deep truth I am finding there.

2. Memorize Scripture

Memorizing Scripture is good for the brain (all you students out there should take advantage of this!) and most of all, it is good for the heart. “Thy Word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against Thee.” Psalm 119:11

3. Pray

Prayer is powerful, and Satan knows this. There is a reason that prayer is one of the greatest struggles for many Christians. Sid Roth said, “The enemy will try to limit your praying because he knows your praying will limit Him.”

4. Go on a Walk

Fresh air does wonders to clear brain fog, alleviate headaches, and bring balance physically and emotionally. And the exercise of a vigorous walk is always good!

5. Study an Informative Topic

The other day I had some time, and I started browsing some articles on leadership. This is something I need to do more- purposefully study topics that will help me to learn and grow. Study is hard, especially in a life that is already full of work and responsibilities. But study can be a surprising source of refreshment and clarity in the work that we do.

6. Read a Book

It has been said that “Readers are Leaders”. Many of the best leaders of history and our day have also been readers. Reading is not only profitable to our minds, but settling in with a good book, even if for only 15 minutes, can be very relaxing.

What about you? What is your greatest temptation with technology? Which of these 6 things do you want to start doing more of?

-Allison

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19 Comments

  1. What great reminders! Thanks Alli! Along with the “Go on a walk” one -I would add exercising/stretching.(Although probably only if your at home/a more private place!) Yes, even if it’s only five minutes-well your waiting for someone, taking a quick break from your work, or simply being tempted to waste time on your phone! Not only will it refresh your mind, it also will help with weight loss/flexibility and help you to have more energy! Youtube has some great 5-10 minute videos to follow along with. For me, of the six you mentioned, I would like to make a better plan start memorizing scripture with focus and a goal. I have done it off and on for awhile, but defiantly want to get more serious/focused.
    God bless you!

  2. Wonderful and much-needed post, Allison! I’d like to add a seventh option that’s my personal go-to… knitting! (Or crocheting, or cross-stitch…) In my “day job” as an editor, I’m looking at the screen all day. The last thing I want to do in my free time is stare at the screen some more–though, as you said, those social media apps do lure me! I find that hand-crafting uses that other part of my brain that so needs exercise, and I get to make lovely (at least to me!) things for myself and others.

  3. This is SO true!! I find it takes a lot of effort to choose to invest those small pockets of time into something worthwhile, but it’s so much more fruitful! I saw an article once that said that choosing to spend those 2 minute breaks in worship completely changes our perspective & revitalizes us. It’s just not the natural tendency and requires discipline! Thanks for this encouragement!! <3

  4. Thanks for sharing, Allison! So good!! Though I don’t have a phone, I do social media on my laptop, and I certainly have to be very intentional about being wise with my use of it. 🙂 Those are all great suggestions to do instead! I think I need to be more intentional about reading and really studying the Word more than I do—if I will just take the time to study, there are so many nuggets of truth in there everywhere!!

  5. Ah, these are such good thoughts Allison!! For me, one thing I do to some extent but oh, I need to do more, is pray super intentionally when I’m tempted to disconnect and just pick up my phone to check this or that. It’s those little moments that matter-how are you being intentional about even the smallest bits of time?! I haven’t thought of EB’s book idea, but I may need to try that, especially as I will have some time waiting in airports in the next few months:)
    Anyways, thanks so much for sharing!!! Appreciate your heart so much. Love you, friend.

  6. Purposely let my phone die while I was up north with my familia these past several days and it was SO refreshingly needed. No one died and only one friend was engaged during that time, who I was able to congratulate once back. 🙂 Next time, there’s a couple people that I’d give a heads-up to that I’m going off the grid, since they had some questions during that time, but otherwise it was great.

    Also, a while back I was encouraged to keep a book in my purse and it’s amazing how many little moments are squeezed into a day to get some reading in! A lady laughingly said, “Woah! It’s a book!” one time when seeing a young person reading instead of on a screen.

    I found this post about social media free weekends useful! https://cultivatewhatmatters.com/2016/11/18/how-to-have-a-social-media-free-weekend-2/

    1. What good thoughts, EB! Thanks for sharing- gonna check out that post. It is something I am continually needing to work on.

  7. Thanks so much for these tips! Whenever I’m in need of a mental break, it’s SO easy to just pick up a phone and browse the web. From now on, I’m going to try to be more intentional with my free time.

  8. Ah, it hurts my heart so much to see even wonderful godly young people just glued to their phones! Honestly sometimes, I just want to say “for goodness sake people! Isn’t your precious family sitting all around you more important to invest in than commenting on that insta post of a friend’s bfast 100 miles away!??!!” Yes, phones are wonderful tools + keeping up with friends is a good thing, but intentional using is so needed. Love your purposeful attitude about stepping away with your phone, that blesses my heart so much when I see that. <3<3

    1. You are so welcome! I was totally preaching to myself- I think pretty much every single person in my generation needs to work on this!

  9. A friend of mine and I were JUST talking about this. I really don’t like how we start to feel like we can’t leave the house without being attached to our phone. Or even a room of the house for that matter….. Thanks for this post!

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