by Meghna Kumar
According to CNN, teenagers spend an average of nine hours a day watching TV, videos, and movies, playing video games, reading, listening to music and checking social media. Let’s face it: this statistic isn’t shocking. Nowadays, regardless of where I go, I am amazed by the number of people who are able to walk with eyes glued to their phones, never looking up. Although using and checking our phones multiple times a day has become commonplace, nine hours a day of cellphone use accounts for 50% of our waking hours (assuming the average person sleeps for 6 hours of the 24 hours in one day). If you need help staying off of your phone, here are some apps that can help:
1. Freedom: this app is available for the iPhone and it allows you to block any website of your choice for a certain number of hours. For example, you can choose to block Twitter from 4-7 pm, and the app will prevent you from accessing the website from your phone for that time interval. You can also set the time interval to suit a daily schedule, if you wish to set a time interval to complete your homework every day. You can also choose to set a time interval for a single day if you have a big project due and want to eliminate any potential distractions.
2. Unplugged: this app is also available for the iPhone and once you “unplug,” it prevents you from accessing anything on your phone. This includes text messages and phone calls and there are no settings to allow certain individuals to contact you– it’s all or nothing. Warning: this app is easy to turn off, so if you really don’t have very much self-control, this app may not be the best choice.
3. Stay Focusd (yes, it’s spelled that way): this is actually an extension for Google Chrome, and not an iPhone app. It can be found and downloaded for free from Google store. This, like the Freedom app, allows you to block any website of your choice for a certain number of hours, but comes with an extra setting: the nuclear mode. Once turned on, this special mode cannot be turned off until the set time limit ends. This is the ideal option for anyone who doesn’t trust themselves to not turn any of the productivity apps off.