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Spending too much time on your phone and want to bring down your screentime hours? Here are 250 fun, entertaining, and productive things to do instead of being on your phone!
Whether it be social media, surfing the internet, or replying to text messages, it seems our phones are always in our hands.
We pride ourselves on being reachable 24/7 and are there to pick up the phone at the first notification.
While there are definite perks to being connected with others through our phones, they also can really take away from our connection to the present moment.
With our noses stuck in our phones, we miss out on moments, experiences, memories, and in-person connections all around us.
Not to mention, they have an unmatched ability to interrupt a beautiful moment. Sitting down to dinner with a loved one and – buzz, buzz! – a stressful work email comes in and rips you away from the moment.
If you’re someone who is starting to feel a bit too connected to their phone, it’s time to explore some things to do instead of being on your phone.
Instead of scrolling social media, instead of playing on your phone, and instead of looking at your screen, try doing one of these phone-free activities.
Here are 250 things to do without your phone to help break the phone habit, lower that screen time, and bring you back into the present moment.
250 Things to Do Instead of Being on Your Phone
There are so many things to do instead of social media, texting, and being on your phone.
To help you find the perfect phone-free activity, I’ve broken these things to do without your phone into categories:
- Outdoor activities
- Productive activities
- Social activities
- Creative activities
- Healthy activities
- Self-care activities
- Educational activities
- Out-and-About activities
- At-home activities
Let’s explore these categories and all of the amazing options for activities to do without your phone!
Outdoor Things to Do Without Your Phone
Put your phone down and get outdoors! Here are 20 outside activities you can do without your phone – leave that sucker inside!
- Take a walk
- Tend to your yard
- Put your bare feet in the grass
- Visit the beach
- Walk your local shops
- Take photographs of nature
- Spot shapes in the clouds
- Sit at a park and people-watch
- Play with sidewalk chalk like a kid again
- Ride your bike
- Fly a kite
- Go sledding, skiing, or snowboarding
- Plant a flower
- Plant a vegetable garden
- Play catch or frisbee
- Play an outdoor yard game
- Explore a nature trail
- Wander your neighborhood and admire your neighbors’ yards
- Climb a tree
Productive Things to Do Instead of Being on Your Phone
We all know what a time-sucker our phones can be. Here are 25 productive things to do without your phone. You’ll be surprised how much you can accomplish without your phone distracting you!
- Change your sheets
- Vacuum your room
- Organize your junk drawer
- Start a habit tracker
- Clean out your purse
- Clean out your closet
- List old clothes/accessories on Poshmark
- Clean your shower
- Tidy up your desk/workspace
- Do your laundry
- Plan your week
- Plan your weekly to-do list
- Meal plan dinners for the week
- Make a weekly grocery list
- Create a budget plan for the month
- Dust your house
- Clean out the garage
- Set new monthly goals
- Clean the kitchen sink
- Fill your vitamin container for the week
- Clean out your car
- Wash your car exterior
- Organize CDs, DVDs, video games, etc.
- Color-code your closet
- Clean out your kitchen pantry/fridge
Social Things to Do Instead of Social Media
“SOCIAL” media… but is it really? Here are 20 social activities to do instead of scrolling social media mindlessly!
- Visit your grandma
- Go for a walk-and-talk with a friend
- Meet a friend for coffee
- Host a family dinner
- Visit a local cafe and talk to the barista
- Compliment a stranger
- Go to Starbucks and pay it forward
- Bake something for your neighbors and take it over
- Give a hug
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- Catch up with an old friend
- Write someone a kind note for no reason
- Go for a family picnic
- Take a phone-free date with your significant other
- Host a party
- Make a new friend – say hi to someone new!
- Strike up a conversation at the dog park
- Host a game night
- Go to the mall and people-watch
- Write a kind note and leave it in public for a stranger to find
Creative Activities to Do Instead of Being on Your Phone
Don’t allow your phone to stifle your inner creativity any longer! Here are 20 unique things to do instead of being on your phone that will help you unleash your inner creative genius!
- Write a short story
- Paint a sunrise/sunset
- Sketch the view from your window
- Learn to zentangle
- Learn how to play the piano
- Write some poetry
- Respond to some creative journal prompts
- Choreograph a dance
- Write a song
- Tackle a DIY project
- Learn to play the guitar or ukulele
- Learn to knit
- Make pottery
- Draw cartoons
- Redecorate your room
- Write jokes
Healthy Things to Do Instead of Scrolling on Your Phone
Our phones not only impact our mental health, but they can directly impact our physical health too! Whether it be tech neck, an overly sedentary lifestyle, or the consistent blue light, too much screentime is not good for us!
Here are 30 healthy things you can do instead of being on your phone.
- Take a workout class
- Try out some new recipes
- Go for a run
- Play a game of basketball
- Do yoga
- Meal prep healthy snacks for the week
- Pin new recipes on Pinterest
- Try kickboxing
- Go swimming
- Take a pilates class
- Do a barre workout
- Foam roll your muscles
- Turn on your favorite song and dance
- Do a HIIT workout
- Go for a hike
- Play a game of soccer
- Go golfing
- Play tetherball
- Go bowling
- Get fresh produce from a farmers’ market
- Try out new infused water variations
- Play 4-square
- Create an obstacle course
- Hula hoop
- Lift weights
Self-Care Activities Without Your Phone
If scrolling on Instagram is your main form of self-care, you may want to explore some of these self-care activities that don’t involve scrolling on your phone!
- Read a book
- Take a self-care bath
- Grab your favorite takeout meal
- Watch a comfort TV show
- Laugh with loved ones
- Cuddle a pet
- Step outside and breathe fresh air
- Create positive affirmations for yourself
- Write down your dreams
- Create a vision board
- Online shop
- Take yourself out to lunch
- Take a nap
- Enjoy a delicious dessert
- Listen to a motivating podcast
- Diffuse essential oils
- Watch the sunrise/sunset
- Have an at-home spa night
- Go for a drive
- Listen to your favorite song/playlist
- Have a self-care shower
- Write down your favorite inspirational quotes
- Create a bucket list
- Take yourself on a shopping date
- Light some candles
- Do some skincare
- Create a self-care kit
- Have a massage
- Get your nails done
- Enjoy a cup of tea or coffee
- Color in a coloring book
- Watch a feel-good movie
- Do a puzzle
Educational Things to Do Instead of Being on Your Phone
Our phones not only can pull us from connection and social situations, but they can also totally suck our time and leave us no room to expand our brains. To help counter this, here are 25 educational activities you can do instead of scrolling.
You can learn…
- A new language
- How to do yoga
- How to cut your own hair
- Photography skills
- How to play an instrument
- How to start a blog (+ make money from it too!)
- Organization tips/tricks
- How to do home projects
- Computer shortcuts
- How to make a budget plan
- New recipes
- How to bullet journal
- Card tricks
- How to make coffee at home
- Video-editing skills
- How to have an at-home spa night
- Self-improvement skills
- How to start journaling
- How to do your nails at home
- Conversation skills/people skills
- Ways to save money
- The stock market
- How to use affiliate marketing to make money
- Time-saving skills
At-Home Things to Do Without Your Phone
When we’re bored at home, our first instinct is often to mindlessly scroll on our phones. But, there are so many other ways to spend your at-home time! Here are some fun at-home activities that don’t involve your phone.
- Play a board game
- Make a fort
- Bake something new
- Rearrange your furniture
- Plan future outfits
- Decorate for the season
- Have a movie marathon
- Do an unsolved case file
- Play on your D.S. (remember how fun they are?!)
- Do an at-home workout
- Play a brain game (Suduko, Wordsearch, crossword, etc.)
- Write a short story
- Make a manifestation list
- Plan future gift ideas for loved ones
- Get caught up on your favorite TV shows
- Make homemade bread
- Play with a pet
- Look through old photographs
- Play the Nintendo Wii
- Plan your dream vacation
- Do your makeup
- Do your hair
- Build a fire in the fireplace
- Make Rice Krispie treats
- Do a paint by numbers
Out-and-About Things to Do Without Your Phone
When you set your phone down, you’re able to enjoy the countless things around you that you may not otherwise fully experience. Leave your phone behind (aside from your GPS needs 😉 ) and head out of the house for one of these fun experiences!
Go to the…
- Public library
- Amusement park
- Local mom-and-pop shops
- Local elementary school playground (if allowed!)
- Grocery store (I love Trader Joe’s runs!)
- Thrift shop
- Local coffee shop
- Ice cream shop
- Closest hiking trail
- Farmer’s market
- Best local restaurant
- Animal rescue center
- Trampoline park
- Nail salon
- Closest froyo shop
- Strip mall (window shop!)
More Out-of-the-House Activities:
- Have a picnic
- Pick berries from a local berry farm
- Go on a flower/plant hunt
- Visit the biggest city close to you
- Take photos of nature
- Relax in your yard
- Sit on a bench in public and people-watch
- Volunteer to walk a neighbor’s dog
- Visit a small town close to you and support local businesses
- Tour local open houses for sale (just for fun!)
- Find a local basketball court and shoot the ball around
- Visit/volunteer at a local elderly home or hospital
- Take a day trip
- Go to Target (Target has it all!)
- Go fishing
- Visit a friend’s house
- Offer to help out a neighbor/family member with yard work
- Go plant shopping
- Drive to watch the sunrise/sunset
- Find a beautiful nature spot and draw it
- Throw the ball for your dog in a local park
- Take a workout class (barre, pilates, yoga, OrangeTheory, etc.)
- Pick up trash in your city
- Take yourself on a shopping spree
- Go mini-golfing
10 Reasons You Should Take a Break From Your Phone
So now we have all these amazing things to do instead of being on our phones, but WHY?
Why is it so important to take time away from your phone?
Let’s explore 10 reasons you should prioritize some screen-free time!
- You miss out on the present moment. Our phones can really pull our attention away from the present moment. Phones are intended to be a tool to ADD to our daily moments, not take away from it. If you are missing out on memories, moments, and experiences with your nose in your phone, it’s time to take a break.
- Social media impacts our mental health. Many studies have been done on the effects of social media on our mental health. Nearly all are concluding that too much social media use can really harm our mental health. Taking time away and limiting social media usage can help with this.
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- Our phones are addictive. Phones have been seen to produce addictive behaviors in users. Phone addiction is real. Consciously taking time away from your phone can help prevent the addictive habit from forming.
- Phones make us less social. “Social media”… but is it really? Studies are finding that phones are impacting our ability to be social in real-life face-to-face moments.
- Phones distract us. Phones, with their addictive qualities, can distract us from the present moment. Whether it be a social situation, work responsibility, or even watching a TV show, the urge to check our phones can interrupt it. Taking a break can help break the habit.
- Social media pressures affect us. Ever in a moment and, instead of enjoying it, you’re thinking of how it will LOOK to your Instagram followers? Yup, that really interferes with your ability to be present and enjoy the moment.
- Our attention spans are suffering. Studies have concluded that phones are totally wrecking our attention spans. Don’t allow them to take over your mind. Be proactive in taking phone breaks.
- We miss out on small moments. When we’re stuck in our phones, we miss the world around us. Smiling at a stranger, striking up a conversation in line at the store, seeing a cute dog – all of these things can be missed when on your phone.
- Screens affect our eyesight. Eye strain is common with too much screentime. There are ways to protect your eyes from screens (these blue light glasses are great!), but none are quite as effective as stepping away for a while.
- Real-life is so much more beautiful. Life online can be great, but nothing compares to the beauty of real life: nature, friends, family, and in-person connections.
How will you take time away from your phone?
Which one of these things to do instead of being on your phone is the most appealing? How will you take time away from your screen?
Leave a comment below to let me know and don’t forget to share this list with friends!