Why I Stopped Looking At My Phone Right When I Wake Up
You open your eyes after a restful night of sleep, turn over to your side table and grab your phone to see what you *missed* while you were asleep. Notifications, emails, texts. All of a sudden you notice that slow and wonderful phase of waking up has turned into a high-stress, reactionary and somewhat anxious state. You already feel unaccomplished as you are watching Instagram stories, and everyone on the East Coast has already worked out, had a business meeting, and has tackled much more than you.. and yet, you just woke up (at a reasonable hour, might I add!). A few weeks ago I watched this video on Youtube that really made me think about how my dependency of my phone has changed my thoughts and the way my days start, every single day.
When we are just waking up, our brains are in a Theta wave state. This is considered the most creative wavelength, and above Theta is Alpha, which is a state of relaxed awareness, optimal for learning. This is the state we are in when we meditate (or watch television), because our critical mind is relaxed and we absorb information, unconsciously. When we are in this Alpha/Theta state first thing in the morning, our minds are very vulnerable, so if the first thing we do is pick up our phones, what we are absorbing is what is rewiring our subconscious mind (which is about 95% of our brain— it is what we use to make our everyday decisions and is the reason we have patterns and personalities). Looking at our phones first thing in the morning is resulting in two problems; firstly it is decreasing our level of productivity. It is training us to be distracted. You know when you’re having a conversation with someone but you can’t help but want to look at your phone, check your inbox, check your notifications? Looking at our phones when we wake up is also training us to be reactive and impressionable. When we respond to what is happening around us (in our phones) instead of presently in the moment, it causes us to have those quick reactionary responses IRL. Every scroll, every image we see, whether positive or negative effects how we feel on a subconscious level. While our phones are amazing, helpful and informative, I think it’s best to use them when we are at our optimal awareness. So let your phone sit for an hour in the morning, I promise you aren’t missing out on anything but the present moment.
Things I do instead of looking at my phone:
1. I light a candle, make a cup of coffee and read a book for thirty minutes. Typically it is something that will inspire my day or information I have been interested in, whether it is wellness, mindfulness, or a classic novel.
2. Journaling! Writing my intentions for my day gives me purpose and something to accomplish. When I write down creative ideas and to-do lists, I find myself more productive throughout my day.
3. Shower, do a mask, and start laundry.