If you’ve ever felt like your smartphone was getting in the way of a breakthrough thought, you may not be off base. Research suggests that our brains need downtime and that people have some of their most creative ideas when they’re bored. The constant distraction of our phones can get in the way of that.
Our friends at New Tech City, a WNYC podcast, recently challenged us all to put our phones down with their campaign Bored and Brilliant: The Lost Art of Spacing Out. Using an app, Moment, participants tracked their smartphone usage for a week and were challenged to cut it down the next.
Seven people on the All Things Considered staff were among those who took up the gauntlet, including host Audie Cornish. And while my colleagues and I didn’t feel we were doing very well, we did better than the larger group and reduced our phone use by an average of 10 minutes a day. Overall, the more than 18,000 participants cut their smartphone screen time by an average of four minutes, according to New Tech City host Manoush Zomorodi. [listen to NPR]