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Wasting Time In The Mornings
For the past couple of years, when I woke up, the first thing I did was check the notifications on my phone.
I would respond to text messages, Facebook messages, Snapchat, Instagram, etc.
I would refresh my inbox and see what new emails I got.
This routine happened every morning for years, taking up 15-30 minutes at a time.
It’s no wonder I seemed to never have time to do anything in the morning before getting ready for work and then leaving in a hurried frenzy.
My frenetic brain would arrive to work, unfocused, probably because of the mornings spent unproductively filling it with crap from the social toilet.
I thought it was mostly me, until I asked my friends if they check their phones first thing in the morning too and most of them said yes.
So it might be a modern habit in the smart phone era.
Not All Bad
When I asked my brother, who is in the art, film, and social media world, what his thoughts were on checking social media right after waking up, he told me that he didn’t consider it “wasting his time.”
He viewed social media more as “checking the news” to keep him up to date on what’s happening in his realm.
So he considered his mornings “very productive.”
Him saying that helped me understand more of where he was coming from with that angle.
Everyone is different (gasp!).
So what is unproductive and time-wasting for some might be productive and useful for others.
But Time Is Money
You might have heard of the saying that “Time is money.”
Last time I checked, I wasn’t financially independent (F.I.), YET.
Meaning I could, and should, SPEND MORE TIME to EARN MORE MONEY working toward F.I.
But where was I to find “more time?”
I wasn’t a Time Lord like The Doctor who could just go into his Tardis and create more time.
And technically we all have the same 24 hours in a day.
Given 8 hours for sleep, that’s 16 hours left to work toward our goals.
I wasn’t willing to wake up at 5am every morning like Scott from Making Momentum.
He finds it very productive to go to bed around 9pm every night and wake up at 5am to jog while listening to podcasts and audiobooks, do freelance side-hustles, and write his blog.
All before going to his normal 9am-5pm office job.
I wanted to find a way where I could still be more productive in a day and work toward financial independence while accommodating my night-owl schedule.
That’s where reclaiming time wasted from checking phones in the morning comes into play.
Turn Your Phone On Airplane Mode When You Sleep To Reach Financial Independence Faster
I was aware of how much time I was spending on social media in the morning but I lacked the will-power to do anything about it short of deleting all social media apps from my phone.
I even applied KonMari minimalism to my Facebook and unfriended over 66% of my “friends” list to see if that would help.
Read that post here.
I don’t know how I came about this, but one night, I just put my phone on airplane mode and kept it off in the morning after I woke up.
It turned out to be one of the most productive mornings I’ve had in a while.
I finally managed to work on my blog, book, and journal.
I decided to repeat this process every morning for the past two months and it’s worked wonders.
I’m almost done with a draft of a book I’ve been working on for the past year.
I’ve published more blog posts.
I even started a podcast! (On financial independence and minimalism, aimed at providing you with actionable value from the get-go).
Check out my Jack The Dreamer Podcast.
Let me know what you think.
If you like it or didn’t like it. Whether it provides value to you or not on-route to F.I. What you would like to hear more on there, etc.
I now have more time to jog and do a small workout before work most mornings.
Health is important on the road to financial independence because it wouldn’t make sense to work yourself to the bone, be unhealthy, and then can’t even enjoy F.I once you reach it.
Time is money, but health is wealth.
Remember to take some time for yourself and relax, decompress, and exercise 🙂 for your physical and mental health in the marathon to financial independence.
With that said, I recommend putting your phone on airplane mode before you go to sleep.
Because if you put it on after you wake up, you could inadvertently see all the texts, emails, and social media notifications you got and want to check them all.
What To Do With Your Reclaimed Time
Now that you have your phone on airplane mode when you sleep and when you wake up in the morning, you can work on side-hustles to make more money to reach financial independence faster.
We live in an amazing era where you now don’t have to leave your house to go to work.
You can go to Upwork.com and work as a freelancer from the comforts of your home or anywhere in the world.
I’ve done a couple of small jobs on Upwork, charging my own price per hour, etc.
The only caveat is that you have to reach out and “apply” to people who post virtual jobs.
For example, I’ve edited a PDF for a health care company, and wrote book summaries for a tech startup, all from home.
You really run the gamut as to what work you can do according to your skill set.
If you’re good at video editing, there are those jobs on Upwork as well.
Or if you don’t want to do freelance work, you could use that spare time to write that book you’ve always wanted to write and try to publish it for royalties.
Or if you’re an artist and love to paint or create with your hands, you could create art and sell it on Etsy or other online stores, etc.
The world is your oyster 🙂
Some Fun Numbers
Let’s say you put your phone on airplane mode and conservatively reclaim about 15 minutes each morning.
And let’s say you only do that for 5 days a week, times 52 weeks.
15 minutes/day X 5 days/week X 52 weeks = 3,900 minutes.
3,900 minutes is 65 hours.
That’s 65 hours you could use to write your book, blog, vlog, and create art to reach financial independence faster.
More than one work week and a half, RECLAIMED.
All by simply putting your phone on airplane mode when you go to sleep.
Some Concerns You Might Have
“But what if I miss important phone calls?”
There have been times when the person on the other end said something like, “We will call you in the morning to discuss.”
Because I didn’t want to miss their phone call in the morning, I would not put my phone on airplane mode for that one night.
I would still go ahead and work on my side-hustles while waiting for their phone call, but I always found such mornings to not be as productive because I would definitely check notifications on my phone.
Luckily that sort of situation doesn’t always happen.
Regarding missing important phone calls, my parents have had late night phone calls from us when we were younger asking if they could help us out of perilous situations.
So if you’re a parent, I can understand that your situation might be different from a 26 year old with no kids.
So you might need to keep on the phone on.
“But what if some horrible calamity happens in the middle of the night and my family tries to call me to warn me but I didn’t pick up and now I have to fend off the Walking Dead by myself?”
If that case ever happens, I’m very sorry to hear that.
I had to let go of those fears of dying from a missed phone call as well in order to free up my mind to do bigger things.
Like using the time saved to create and add good value in the world.
“But what if I missed an important text, email, or sale promo?”
In the two months since I’ve had my phone on airplane mode at night and in the morning, I have yet to witness an email, text, or phone call that was SO DIRE, that a business, a person, or I, were going to die or be severely harmed in any way, shape, or form, whether monetarily, physically, or mentally.
Who knows? Your situation might be different.
Also, in terms of missing a sales promo, could it wait the 15 minutes while you worked on a side-hustle after you wake up before you spend money online to buy it?
If you think of anything else that could be a cause for concern with putting your phone on airplane mode to be more productive, please let me know in the comments below.
Just Do It
If you do put your phone on airplane mode, I suggest doing it for 7 days to see if it works for you.
Then increase it to 30 days.
Let me know how it goes!
Do you think this will or will not help you reach financial independence faster?
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