We have all heard of and maybe have tried to address habit changing challenges. The 21 Day Fix, 30 day ab challenge, fit arms in fifteen, etc.…. People track their eating and exercise in journals to better understand their patterns and derailers. This type of personal accountability is made easier with the assistance of a plan or coach. Now I ask you have you ever tracked your phone/technology activity?

Trends demonstrate that people are reacting more to their phones than to other people. We are becoming less empathetic and understanding. We are not being present with others. We view our phones as an extension of ourselves. Think about it, how much time do people spend personalizing their phones – cases, screens, apps, tones,…We keep them with us at all times making us always “on”. Instead of asking a friend or colleague for a recommendation, we google and read faceless reviews.  What is the cost to ourselves, our relationships and our time? Our ability to listen, connect, influence, help, build trust, have an effective relationship?

Here are some behaviors to think about and recognize:

You look at your phone while talking to someone

This is a red flag that no one appreciates and is quite disrespectful. The people talking to you will get the feeling you are not interested in what they are saying and, if you do this to someone a couple of times, chances are that that person is going to start avoiding you or not coming to you for your input.

The first thing you do when you get somewhere is charge your phone

If someone is in the room, stop & pause, look the person in the eye, and say hello. Ask how they are doing. Connect, interact, then charge your phone!

You fall asleep holding your smartphone

If you cannot let go of your smartphone even before you go to bed, and you like to put yourself to sleep while doing stuff on it, are you able to decompress?  Get enough sleep or are you restless feeling you forgot to do something or worrying about an on-line interaction? Stop, reflect, think about a positive thought and experience. Research has showed we should be “shutting down” at least 20-30 minutes before going to bed to ensure we have enough sleep and that it’s restful.

The first thing you do in the morning is check your phone

If your first impulse in the morning is to grab your phone and check if you have any messages, calls or notifications, check social media to see what has happened in the lives of some people you have not spoken to in years, what about connecting with your those in your household?

How about reflecting on what you want to accomplish that day, that week?  What are your thoughts for self-development, self-awareness?

You feel anxious when your phone is not with you

There is a great chance that you are addicted to your smartphone and the interaction of being on-line, if you are unable to leave it out of your sight for any length of time. Leave your smartphone down. Be present with people in meetings, when you are speaking with them, even if it’s virtually. Connect, listen, be engaged.

You can’t put the phone down when you are on vacation

Are you spending quality time with your family, friends, others, yourself? Are you relaxing, recharging or feel the insatiable need to stay connected?

We have seen a recent increase in our clients working with organizations, leaders and their teams to increase personal awareness. We are also addressing challenges with leaders and teams on having effective communication, time management, coaching and team effectiveness.

I challenge you to track your phone usage and habits for 5 days. Make sure you consider the time of day, where you are, are you looking at Facebook, Pinterest, work email, etc.? What was the sacrifice of the time you spent on your phone? What else could you have done? What creative idea could you have spent time one? How strong are your relationships? Have you asked others about your phone habits? The number one reason people don’t accomplish their goals is TIME. Let’s see if this challenge can help you create more productive time to accomplish your goals!!

About the Author: Adrienne Mollor

About MCG Partners

MCG Partners a woman-owned, Greater Boston-based consultancy specializing in executive coaching, leadership development, talent management, and organizational development solutions. We help businesses optimize success through the entire management life-cycle. MCG Partners is also a Predictive Index® (PI®) certified partner.

To learn more about MCG Partners’ services or The Predictive Index®, contact John Griffith at john.griffith@mcgpartners.com or visit mcgpartners.com.