You had an urgent deadline and you promised to yourself that you are going to finish the work at any cost. I will quickly check my Facebook timeline and will begin the work then, you said to yourself. Only to realise that you spent the last 45 minutes on Facebook and have only an hour to go before the deadline.
Phone and social media addiction at work can take a toll on your productivity at work. Most of us have this insane habits of checking our phones every few minutes, be it scrolling through Instagram, checking emails, texting on WhatsApp or exploring Facebook. No matter how hard we try to give up the addiction, no solution has been found to be effective in the long term.
Until I came across the suggestion on an article in The Wall Street Journal about going grayscale. This means changing your phone colours to a mere black and white screen, in order to make it far less appealing.
So, how grayscaling helped me fight my Instagram addiction?
I am a frequent user of Instagram and I am highly motivated and inspired by some amazing feeds. However, I happen to detest it at the same time as it kindles a sense of discontent and jealousy in me by looking at other people's picture of ideal vacations and picture-perfect lives. I had this strange inclination of posting images multiple times a day in order to get more likes and followership.
However, after using grayscale, I discovered that my average time spent on Instagram greatly reduced. I spent a lot less time thoughtlessly checking Instagram (like I used to do) and only checked the feeds that were important or useful. In addition, my desire to post frequently diminished. Unlike in the colour filled world where I was inclined to post at least two times a day, I did not even feel persuaded to post a simple black and white picture.
I estimated that going grayscale decreased my Instagram usage by up to 75%. This was highly useful as it saved up a lot of time at work and led me to the realisation that the radiant colours of my phone deceived me into believing that most of the consumption was worthy of my time.
Finally, I Reach out to Phone Way Less
Another issue I dealt with was reaching for my phone continuously without any reason, and then forgetting why I opened it in the first place. However, going grayscale helped me limit this habit. I also found myself rarely wanting to reach for it, probably because my mind understood that I would not derive as much enjoyment as before due to the absence of colours. As a result, my instinct to reach for my phone was not there.
It's strange that most of us don't even realise that our phones are equipped with the grayscale feature.
To turn on the grayscale feature on iPhone – Read this
To turn on the grayscale feature on Android phones – Read this
I felt that my phone served no useful purpose to me other than communication, much like a flip phone. I only used it when I needed to communicate with other people or when others needed to contact me. Consequently, I had more free time and better mental space and of course a highly improved productivity at the workplace.
Overall, if you experience phone addiction like me, I suggest you try grayscale. In a worst-case scenario, it will show you how the world was captured before the coloured camera was invented. In a best-case scenario, it can give you endless hours of free time at work and at home.