Smartphones have become so woven into our lives; it seems we often wonder how we survived without them. At your fingertips is access to unlimited information – plus entertainment – with just the tap of a button. But have you wondered just how much your phone may be distracting you at work? A recent CareerBuilder survey revealed these eye-opening stats:
- 82% of workers keep eye contact with their phones at all times.
- 2 out of 3 workers admit they check their phones several times a day.
- 75% of employers say 2 or more hours of productivity are lost each day from distracted workers.
- More than half of employees say cell phones and texting are the biggest time wasters at work.
Yikes! As smartphone usage increases, productivity decreases. So, what steps can you take to put down your phone and stay focused at work? Check out these quick tips:
- Tuck it away. Remember that stat above? 82% of workers keep their phone within eye contact, which means you’re more likely to impulsively pick it up. Instead, stash your phone in a drawer to keep it out of sight to prevent temptation.
- Turn off notifications. Chimes, vibrations, and lights all draw you to your phone. After all, it could be a really important text, right? The reality is emergencies are rare, and the world will be okay if you don’t answer every chime right away.
- Go back to the basics. If you feel addicted to your phone, you’re not alone. Anderson Cooper explored the way tech companies are “brain hacking” to get users addicted to apps. Sometimes a clean break from technology can reset your habits. Try stripping your phone to minimal apps and delete or disable the distractions that keep you coming back. Writer Jack Knapp did just that for a 7-day experiment that he loved so much, he’s still using a bare-bones iPhone.
- Save phone time for break time. If you’re guilty of checking your personal emails, news feeds, and social media several times a day, make a commitment to only peek at your phone at designated times – like your lunch break.
- Know the code. Many employers have policies around personal cell phone usage at work. Make sure you know your employers guidelines and stick to them.
Changing your technology habits may be hard at first, but stick to it. It takes discipline, but reducing your smartphone distractions at work will allow you to focus more on tasks and less on personal business. And who knows, all that extra work may just land you a raise, promotion, or other unexpected opportunity.