7 Day Challenge: Media Detox Challenge

By Ailin L.

My 7 day challenge was spending less time on my phone. I did something different everyday for a week in order to detox my phone usage. I chose to do this media detox challenge because I have noticed myself spending a lot of time using electronics and I wanted to see if I would cut down my screen time.

I didn’t expect this challenge to be that hard because I believe I can live without a phone. Although I spend a few hours using my phone everyday on social media; using Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, etc., I don’t believe I am addicted to it. There are some days that I don’t use my phone at all.

The first few days of my challenge were pretty easy, the tasks were not hard to complete. On Monday, I deleted apps that I don’t use or need on my phone, which were apps that some of my teachers required me to download for class. I didn’t hadn’t deleted the unused apps before because I forgot all about them. I just left them on my phone, taking up storage space.

Tuesday, I turned off push notifications so I won’t be distracted by my phone. Usually, whenever my friends text me, I text them back as soon as I see their messages. If their messages pop on my screen as a notification, I get distracted by it and then I stay on my phone instead of doing whatever I am suppose to do. For Wednesday, I unfollowed people who aren’t my real friends on Facebook and Instagram so I will not want to spend more time on social media. To this point the challenges have been really easy because I haven’t had to limit the time I spend on the phone.

Thursday and Friday were both time limit-based challenges. I could not use my phone until a certain time has passed in order to shorten my phone usage. On Thursday, I could not use my phone until noon. Lucky, I did not have the need to use my phone before noon since I was busy trying to finish homework during my free time.

But on Friday I had to stay off my phone until dinner, which was pretty difficult for me because I enjoy using my phone to chat with my friends and look through social media. Instead of using my phone once I got home like I normally did, I decided to take a nap to recharge my energy.

On Saturday, I was not allowed to use social media all day. I was tempted to give up on that day because I wanted to use YouTube in order to listen the audio version of the book I’m reading in class because I didn’t want to read it, but I decided to stay off YouTube in order to compete my challenge because I had only 2 days left.

Finally on Sunday, I didn’t use my phone all day. I think that Sunday was the hardest days of the challenge because I could not use my phone at all. I couldn’t check social media, text my friends or watch YouTube videos. I was bored without my phone and had a hard time figuring out what I wanted to do with my free time since I had nothing to do.

Overall, I would say that doing this challenge was a good experience. I will never ever do this again though, I don’t think I can survive without my phone although I will try to lessen my screen time. I learned that I don’t need my phone as much as I thought I did. But I did feel good when I got the notification from the Screen Time monitor on my iPhone, that I only used my phone an average of 37 minutes per day for the week.

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