This Is What Productive People Do Instead of Checking Their Smartphones

We humans spend roughly 26 years of our lives asleep. As far as the millennial generation is concerned, I'd bet that at least a few years of our lives will have been devoted to checking our smartphones when all is said and done. In fact, a recent study from Locket, as reported by Time, found that the average person checks their phone 110 times a day, or 10 times every hour. Some people check their phones up to 900 times a day, or once every minute of every waking hour of the day.

But, as Greg McKeown, author of Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less, points out in a recent LinkedIn post, obsessively reaching for your smartphone is a productivity killer. Instead, he suggests reaching for your journal or notebook. "Checking your phone forces you to be reactive [rather] than pro-active; it creates pressure to respond to texts and emails when other people want you to, rather than when it's convenient for you," he writes. "Writing in your notebook puts you back in control of your communication; it gives you the chance to craft your reply instead of shooting it off reactively, and respond on your schedule, not someone else's." 

McKeown then goes on to point out how smartphones are often vehicles for anxiety and distress, while writing in your journal promotes calmness and gives you time to think and reflect on your own. "Checking your phone … fools you into thinking that news and updates from the virtual world are more important than what's right in from of you in the actual world right now," he concludes. "Writing in your notebook reminds you of what's important right now."

What do you think of McKeown's approach to cell phones? Share your opinion below.