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Smartphone addiction: Hacks that can help in reducing screen time


Smartphone addiction has become a major health hazard across the world. People are now seeking help from doctors to overcome this addiction.

People spend more time on mobile phones than family. It has also created fissures in the family system. Couples are now seeking help from counselors to help in harmonizing relationships


Screen time is the amount of time spend on different devices including smartphones, computers, television, or video game consoles. The concept is under significant research vis a vis mental health. Studies show that screen time directly impacts child development and mental and physical health.

A report by ‘Rescue Time’, a screen time tracking website, has revealed that on average, a person spends three hours and 15 minutes on phones every day. Additionally, a person attends phone 58 times per day. 

The report noted that during the pandemic-induced lockdown, people have spent more time on phones given the Work From Home (WFH).

Too much screen time can cause vision problems, impact sleep order, and encourage a more sedentary lifestyle. It can even lead to anxiety, stress, and depression.

Here are some of the hacks that can help in reducing screen time.

Setting the limit and tracking the screen time

Firstly, a person has to calculate the hours or minutes he or she spends fidgeting or watching television daily.

You can seek help from different apps.  RescueTime monitors the sites and apps you frequently visit and for how long. TimeCamp, HubStaff, and Toggl are some other options a person can use.

For iPhone 12 users, just turn on the Screen Time function in the Settings app. Android users can do this through the Digital Wellbeing tools located within Settings.

Next, a person can use this information and solutions to set time limits. For example, if you’ve found out that you’re spending too much time on Instagram, you can tell your phone to turn the app off after two hours of use.

More physical interactions than zoom meetings

During the lockdown, people have mostly interacted through messaging apps and social media chat rooms. From WhatsApp groups to Clubhouse chatrooms, people talk for hours without realizing the impact the screen is having on their mental and physical wellbeing.

So, a person who really wants to reduce screen time can choose physical interactions with friends, colleagues, neighbors, and relatives either on a daily basis or some selected days. Taking an interest in offline games can help in achieving this goal.

Stand up, sit less

If you have a way to transform your workspace into a standing desk for at least part of the day, consider doing it.

Standing desks are adjustable desks that allow you to stand up while working. They are becoming more popular and promote good health.

Standing, for example, lowers your risk of weight gain and obesity. “Remember, the fewer hours you spend sitting, the better,” Dr. Tran says.

If you’re on the phone a lot at work, get a headset and walk around when you talk on the phone.

Prefer book reading over smartphone

We know it’s fast and convenient to use your phone or ask your smart device to answer a question. But, instead of relying solely on technology, seek out other ways to access information.

Develop a habit of reading books, say a novel, biography, crime drama, or anything. It can really help a person to increase his knowledge. It can also be a good substitute for a mobile.

Start a new hobby

Have you always wanted to learn how to play piano or sketch a nature scene? Almost everyone can name at least one thing they’d like to learn.

For some, isolation can be just the opening they need to get started.

Try devoting five or 10 minutes to a new hobby. New hobbies can be interesting and will be best time killer exercise than remaining glued to smartphone.

Leverage technology

If a person finds it difficult to disengage from the screen, let technology help to make you screen-free for a while during the day.

Use your phone or calendar system to set alarms reminding you to take breaks. Turn off notifications from messages or social media platforms to reduce distractions. That way you can leave your phone alone until you are ready and finished with other activities.

You can also use high-tech solutions to combat inactivity and weight gain. Activity monitors worn on the body, such as Fitbits, tend to increase your physical activity level simply because you’re paying.