How much time do you spend on your cell phone? Your kids driving you mad with the amount of screen time they need? How about your clients.
In the past month alone, several people approached me during the NLP training about how the amount of time spent on their cell phones has increased since the pandemic. We must start resetting this!
What Does Research Show?
- Research shows this overreliance on a cell phone can lead to mental laziness – it decreases memory and cognitive ability.
- The cell phone’s blue light messes with the melatonin production inside the body, making it more difficult to sleep and adequately regulating the sleep-wake cycle (circadian rhythm.)
- Cell phone use negatively affects conversation, personal connection, and attention.
- Social media has proven to make people unhappier rather than happier.
NLP Technique to Reduce your Cell Phone Time: Introduction
Consider setting up parameters that are conscious and specific. For those of you who have never done an NLP training, here are questions that could help:
- At what time specifically do you want to start engaging with your cell phone in the morning to create a healthier, more relaxing, and happier life?
- At what time specifically do you want to stop engaging with your phone to increase your quality of sleep?
- How specifically will you improve your interpersonal relationships by reducing your screen time?
- What percentage specifically will you decrease your smartphone time with?
- In what contexts specifically will you eliminate or reduce your smartphone time?
- How specifically will you avoid short-term impulse grabbing your cell phone as much as you do?
When to Apply this NLP Technique?
Any time you have the urge to want to use your cell phone. All automated behaviors, habits or even addictions start with a trigger. Something that gives you a cue.
You need to figure out what sets off your triggers. Here are examples:
- Certain emotions and a certain intensity of those emotions.
- Certain thoughts.
- Certain specific contexts.
- Something that changes in the environment.
- Sound (of the cell phone.)
- Other people.
Learning what your triggers are will give you powerful information on how to change your strategies, even prevent them.
Reminder About Habits
A habit has:
- A trigger.
- The habit itself.
- The payoff, for example, pleasure.
NLP Technique To Reduce Your Cellphone Time
You need to start this pattern as soon as the trigger starts, and before the habit occurs.
- Stand-up if you are sitting down. Walk somewhere else where your phone isn’t if you are already standing up. Close your eyes.
2. Imagine seeing yourself standing there with a cell phone some distance away like seeing yourself on a movie screen.
In NLP, we call this technique dissociation.
3. Ask in your minds-eye that you on the movie screen: “What is that you get of using your phone right now?” (This relates to an emotion or a need.) We are more interested in intuitive answers here than logical answers; either will do.
In NLP we call this technique discovering the positive intent that motivates the (bad) behavior.
4. Ask yourself what you specifically could do instead of using your cell phone to get the same emotion or fulfill the same need. Or meet a higher need or even better emotion.
5. As quickly as you can, in your minds-eye push that image of you into the distance while making it smaller and smaller. And dimmer and dimmer. If you can not do this, push it into the distance quickly until it disappears.
In NLP we call this a coding shift using submodalities.
6. Bring a new image in from a distance, very fast, and make it bigger and brighter. This is what you would see, hear and feel if you did this other activity instead.
In NLP, this results in another submodality shift, making this, in essence, a mock-SWISH pattern.
7. Intensify the emotions.
This is another NLP submodality shift in the kinesthetic system.
8. Step into the future you, and imagine what you would see, hear and feel if you reduced your cell phone time for 6 weeks, 3 months from now, a year from now. Whatever seems appropriate to you.
In NLP we call this future pacing.
9. Immediately start doing that other activity.
We call this a pattern interrupt.
You could look at this entire NLP technique to reduce cell phone use as a pattern interrupt.