According to statistics, 71% of people check their phone within 10 minutes of waking up.
This is problematic for a number of reasons:
More Stress: Checking your phone releases adrenaline, which increases heart rate, pulse, and muscle tension. Rather than a relaxing way to start your day, checking your phone increases stress.
Less Intentionality: Checking your phone is the equivalent to giving someone (or something) control over your mind. Whether reading email, scrolling social media, or playing a game, turning on the phone is equivalent to giving permission to someone or something to control your attention.
Less Productivity: It is true that our phones and technology, when used correctly, can make us productive, efficient, and impactful. This blog is a testament to the fact. But it is also true, when used incorrectly, our phones can also become a distraction from our most productive selves. And that sets a dangerous precedent for our day.
Less Fulfilling Relationships: Not everyone sleeps next to another human being (and only a percentage of those who do wake up at the same time as their partner). But if you do, turning your attention away from your partner and toward a digital device, can get in the way of your most important relationship.
If you want to break the habit of checking your phone first thing in the morning, here’s a list of 21 things you could do instead:
1. Use the restroom.
2. Talk to your spouse or partner.
3. Take a shower.
4. Look out the window.
5. Drink a glass of water.
6. Brush your teeth.
7. Stretch your body to improve circulation.
9. Make breakfast.
10. Meditate or pray.
11. Write in a journal.
12. Read a religious or inspirational book.
13. Get dressed.
14. Make your bed.
17. Prepare your lunch (or kid’s or partner’s).
18. Take your dog for a walk.
19. Say out loud, “It’s going to be a great day!“
20. Do a quick tidy-up of your living space.
21. Enjoy a quiet cup of coffee or tea.
There’s no need to do all 21 of course.
But if you find a morning routine that includes just five or six of the items on this list, you’ll start your day in a brand new way.