Call me totally weird, but I’m 23, I’m a millennial, and I have almost all the notifications on my phone turned off.
I don’t know when someone likes my photo on Instagram. I have no idea which of my friends are getting married or having babies on Facebook (I actually have my whole Facebook newsfeed blocked with the free Facebook Newsfeed Eradicator). I don’t get a ping or a beep or a bloop sound every time something happens in the online world.
And I’m so much happier and less stressed out for it.
Ok, so I still get notified when I get a text or an email, but other than that, pretty much all the notifications are turned off. I choose when I want to go into certain apps or websites and then they tell me what’s new and what has happened since I last checked in. But it’s when I want to get updates instead of in the middle of working or trying to be productive.
We’re a leeeeettttle bit addicted to our phones as a whole, but turning off the constant notifications makes you more productive and less stressed. Why? Because you’re not interrupted constantly when you’re trying to talk to someone or be somewhere or live in the moment. Not getting the little beeps and boops helps you stay present and focus on the moment in front of you and the people in front of you.
Also, I don’t know about you, but whenever I get a beep on my phone I know I must check it right this second! So I drop absolutely everything and check the notification on my phone and it’s usually not even important. But at that point, you’re already distracted and may end up getting sucked into the social media vortex and comparing yourself to people online and generally starting to feel pretty bad.
So instead, all you have to do is go into the notification settings on your phone and turn off everything except the really important stuff like direct communication – text messages, emails, Facebook messages, etc. But all the “likes” and new followers and things on social media can definitely be turned off.
I’d recommend starting by turning off all the notifications you know you won’t miss, and then turn off notifications as they come up. So if you get a notification that on this day in the 1960’s some spacecraft landed (yes, that’s from a star gazing app I have haha), then you can decide at that point that you can actually live without notifications from that app too and go ahead and turn them off.
Do the same thing for any other devices you might have. While you’re at it, go through your email inbox and unsubscribe from any newsletters you don’t read, like lists you got on from buying shoes or whatever (except Resilient’s emails, of course ;)).
After a couple weeks, you’ll notice things are a lot quieter and more peaceful. It seriously makes you so much less anxious just to have your notifications turned off, and a lot happier to not compare yourself to people online.
Try it. 🙂