I watch a lot of movies. That would make you go “Madhu, give us your recommendation please!” but I would steer away from that because I realised how poor my attention had become. I couldn’t remember movie plots or where I saw them. So frustrating! I also knew the root cause, I was on multiple gadgets at the same time and just let the movies/series run in the background. I also preferred not watching anything new because I just didn’t have it in me to give it my full attention and do justice to the story! 

It’s actually a popular meme which says, “Can the streaming channels have a category that shows only movies/series that are perfect when I am not concentrating and looking at my phone constantly?” It’s funny and not so funny if you really think about it. Information overload and the dearth of options these days is truly weighing heavy on our minds. I was remembering the simpler times when there was cable TV and limited channels that broadcasted only a few shows, we truly valued entertainment as a relaxer and an escape! Looking forward to those pockets during the day that we would get to watch what we love. I used to always wait to return from school and watch Looney Toons while eating my lunch and then again watch another kid’s show in the evening, so happy, content and was truly invested in the stories! 

I decided to regulate my screen time and social media presence. I recently got to know that the iPhone has a ‘downtime’ that essentially locks all your apps on the phone and gives you three options if you want to open them – ‘one more minute’, ‘Remind me in 15 mins’ and ‘Ignore limit for today’. Point being, you have to manually unlock these apps to be in them and increase your screen time! I was super thrilled at my success of staying away from socials for a good six hours but my screen time still wasn’t down. I was still using my phone to play games or browse recipes while watching shows. I’m becoming way more intentional and keeping my phone away consciously to sit and do ONE activity at a time.

It’s not as easy as it sounds but I am determined to get my attention span back, take a breather and truly enjoy the activities I am indulging in! Being in the now has now become my prime motto and it gets tougher in a world where I am surrounded by digital distractions! 

What are your screen time rules and how are you making such intentional changes? I’d love to learn! 

Madhu Narayan
Guest blogger, Plant Life Meals