Letters to Autumn 16
Letters to Autumn

Letters to Autumn 16

Dear Autumn,

With the new iOS update came the handy addition of ‘screen time’.

Turns out that my usage is nowhere near as bad as I thought it would be.

However I guess it’s doing its job because it is making me more aware of the amount of time I spend looking at a screen.

Especially once I get hime where I’m just very good at staring aimlessly at a screen. Sometimes I’m half between two, on a rare occasion 3…basically I spend a lot of time looking at screens and there was a part of me that wanted to change that and also a part of me that was just too lazy to actively do anything about it. Staring a screen aimlessly is just easier you know?

Anyway, back to the screen time thing. You can schedule ‘down time’ on it and at the tail of last week I actually bothered to do something about it (not gonna lie, Jade from Little Mix made a post on Insta about it and that tipped me over the edge).

I originally set it up just for the time that I am usually asleep (11:30pm-7:30am) and then realised that wasn’t really gonna do anything because I’m already not using my phone.So I made it a 12 hour window. 10:00pm-10:00am

I’ve enabled all my messaging apps (and Citymapper) but everything else goes down for those 12 hours (as the name would imply). I mean you can turn an app off for the day (and I did turn a word search game off down time for the rest of the yesterday at like 10:30, instead of writing this post…the irony is not lost on me), but it’s kind of a bit of a faff to keep doing it every time and so I just sort of leave it.

Also of a morning time it means that I focus more on sorting out my plan of action for the day and am not drawn by the lure of my phone. It also means that I’m less likely to lose track of time when I’m on the train and actually get a solid 30 minutes of focused reading in.

Now look, I haven’t really been doing it all that long (I think this is Day 6…maybe) and it’s still only on my phone which is only one screen that I use and also I have frequently just ingored the limit for a little while and got some solid scrolling in, but old habits. And also I have noticed that for the most part I don’t even need to look at it, I just do it out of habit. An example is that yesterday by the end of my work day my phone still had 83% on it. That pretty much never happens. But I just forgot to look at it once everything went back up (it was also a bit of day, but that usually means nothing).

I haven’t noticed if it’s made any change with my sleep because I’m still trying to get my sleeping pattern back together after two weeks without one, so I can only report back on that one at a later date.

For the most part the decision to do this was a good one. I can tell it’s leading me to a place of more focus, even though I do still use my laptop once my phone ‘goes down’. I don’t go to bed until 11:30, down time starts at 10. I’ve got to fill that time somehow. A pen and paper is not a screen. It’s a great time to get shit done (even if I do still watch Netflix on my laptop sometimes, one screen has got to be better than 2)…


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