How to have a healthy relationship with your smartphone

We keep everything on our phones. Banking, emails, social media "" you name it, it's probably on there! This means we're literally always on our phones, and that's not healthy.

So, how can you make sure you have a balanced relationship with your smartphone? We've got some tips and tricks on how to avoid using your phone too much without having to cut yourself off completely.

Use Flight Safe Mode

If you are an iPhone user, you can use the Do Not Disturb feature which clears your screen of any notifications while it's on. It means you won't be distracted by your phone flashing as messages, emails and social media notifications come in. Instead, you can check it after a considerable break.

The quickest way to enable this is by swiping up from the bottom of the screen to find your Control Centre. You'll see a crescent moon icon on the left hand side which is Do Not Disturb.

Using the bedtime feature in your phone will put do not disturb on between the hours you choose to sleep, so you won't be woken up by your phone in the night. It's the same for Flight Safe Mode – you won't receive any notifications while it's on so you won't feel the need to pick up your phone.

Keep it out of your bedroom

Or, you could eradicate phones from your bedside altogether. It has been suggested that it's a perfect way to get more sleep and keep us off our phones "" if your phone is in another room, it shouldn't be able to wake you up, in theory.

What stops us from doing this is using our phones as alarm clocks, but if you invest in an alarm clock, do you have any other need to have your phone so close to you when you sleep?

Disable notifications

Without your phone telling you have something to look at, it's unlikely you'll feel the need to look at it anywhere near as much as you do. Switch off your notifications for your social media apps, and even your emails if they are personal and you'll be less inclined to check in with your device.

Go without for a day

This is a little bit trickier but we promise, it's absolutely worth it. Find a day out of the week (if you can) to be completely and utterly without your phone. Go and do something you've been itching to do "" and don't post about it on social media! We're sure you'll love to be in the moment. Having a little digital detox will do you the world of good.

Use greyscale

The brunch that girl from work you follow on Instagram had just isn't as appealing when it's all completely grey. The less aesthetic pleasing everything is on your phone, the less likely you'll want to look at it. This will help not only reduce the time you spend on it "" so you'll use it for more meaningful tasks than aimless scrolling "" and it'll stop you wanting to keep checking it.

Set boundaries

Get into the routine of not checking your phone when you wake up, during meal times and when you go to bed. It's advised that we don't look at screens before bed as it keeps our brains working when we should be winding down. It takes us longer to fall asleep because of it, so we're groggy when we wake up in the morning.

Hanging back on our notifications when we wake up gives us a chance to clear our minds before the day begins and keeping your phone away during meals helps you to connect with your loved ones without distraction.

Rethink the snap

We've gotten so used to taking pictures of just about everything we see that's interesting. We'll take selfies beside landmarks, or we'll capture the candyfloss sky of a sunset "" just because. As we're doing it more and more often, we should stop to think about whether we really need to take a picture of it to share on our feeds when we could just savour the moment as it is!

Use your phone to connect

We mean rather than scrolling through different feeds with reckless abandon. Use the time on your phone to check in with a friend or contribute to a conversation you see on Twitter. Then, you're using your time to do something rather than doing nothing and you'll feel better for using your time more wisely.

Take breaks from social media

Take yourself away from social media every so often as it can be damaging for us. Is there a channel that you find the least useful, or that doesn't add anything to your day? Start there, then try to move away from all of your social profiles for a short while. Without social media, you'll use your phone more productively.

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