Here is an article I just posted on Medium about the 3 types of Digital Minimalism for 2022
I think the force of addiction is the hardest problem for most.
For me the biggest difference, was using methods that didn’t require any willpower.
I use a safe with a timer:
And I put my smartphone in it, and also I bought a little padlock to close the bag of my laptop:
And then I also put the key of this padlock in the timed lock container.
The thing is, even if I succeed to not be on my smartphone/laptop, I still feel tired from will powering it out against the battle of addiction. And if I loose, I feel like a complete failure. So basically, I always loose.
With this mechanical locked box, I feel free, creative and ready to find out what life has to offer next to the internet. I use it in the evening/early morning, and during weekends, but also sometimes during the workday, if I feel like I need some moments completely offline.
I really enjoyed your article @Jose_Briones. It kinda puts things in a nice perspective. Also, I believe that taking small steps towards being more technologically mindful helps a lot when you’re ultimate goal is digital minimalism. The solutions proposed by @Kasper_Peulen are a bit radical, but I also know that smartphone addiction is REAL & the pull to scroll mindlessly is super strong. I say, do what works for YOU. It’s a personal journey. It’s easy for me to say- oh just don’t do it, when I’ve been more in control of my screen time for a few years now, But it was’t always like this, It does take time & patience & being kind to yourself if you “fall of the wagon.”
I’m not sure the system by @Kasper_Peulen is unreasonable.
Nicholas Carr, a strongly recommended author, spoke in a keynote about a research that whenever you have a smartphone within reach or available, it will distract your brain subconsciously. I believe it was this one: Nicholas Carr | The World Is Not the Screen || Radcliffe Institute - YouTube They call it the ‘baby effect’: your brain is continuously on guard and ‘listening’ if nothing is happening to your baby (here: a phone). That will significantly decrease your mental capacity, focus, and IQ. I have a smartphone as a secondary device, and I noticed I get a great sense of calm if I don’t have my smartphone with me, but ONLY when out of reach.
I have now almost entirely my smartphone locked up for 5 weeks straight. Using a Nokia 105 as my primary phone. I have only used my smartphone it for when I needed a hotspot, or for testing of the apps I make (I work as web/android/ios frontend developer).
Luckily I can replace the hotspot solution entirely with the Mudita Pure. I found that I really need that, as I like to work in the train if I commute. For my work, as ios developer, I almost don’t need it, as I do almost everything with simulators.
I do think that what @nilss say is true, I feel my focus goes down the moment my phone is available. If I accidentally put my phone in my pocket after a hotspot session, I feel it burning, and it is very hard to resist, even if I’m doing something else, like shopping. In fact, I was not able to resist it all the times (see my screen time report).
I have felt such a great deal of calm the last 5 weeks. I would recommend it to everyone. I do use social media on my desktop (whatsapp, discourse, slack, signal, mudita forum). And sometimes that can be addictive to, but it seems to affect me much less, especially cause I blocked all notifications that those apps can give, and being completely free of those apps the moment I close my computer, is amazing. For example, every morning, I go out of the house, to sport/walk /go to the sauna, whatever. Every evening, I read. I do this in “new time”, that I would otherwise waste on my phone, mindlessly scrolling, watching videos, without really enjoying it.
The dutch word for addiction is “verslaafd” which can be translated as “enslaved”, I guess that is a good way to phrase it, as I experience such an amount of extra “freedom”, even though I’m restricting myself. I guess it is the very compulsive nature of addiction, that makes it feels as if you are not able to choose to do the things that make you actually happy. It does sound like an excellent model to force people to make money for you (watch ads)… I guess it just slavery in a new form.