sly : marketing

My iPhone is Killing My Productivity


I have been using an iPhone as my main communication tool for many years now. I started using it for texting and calling, but I soon discovered that an iPhone is more or less like a tiny computer. I can use it for any part of my business, and it feels like I am carrying my business in my pocket all the time. My iPhone is a very powerful tool, in fact, it’s so powerful that I believe it’s killing my productivity. And, after reading The Toilet Paper Entrepreneur, I have decided that I need to focus on the really important part of my business.

How I am using my iPhone

At the moment, I am using IQTELL as my main productivity tool, it works great on my iPhone. I used to only work when I was at the office. That was it. I got everything done, and I was highly effective. I thought about work outside the office, and I got some of the best ideas outside the office, but the actual work was done when I was at the office.

Now, things are different. I still work at the office, but I work more outside the office than at the actual office. I keep checking my email when I’m walking, I keep adding tasks to Things (the app where I add all my tasks) when I’m outside the movie theatre, and I keep adding notes to Evernote when I’m waiting at the hair dresser. And, it all syncs to my Mac, so when I get back to the office, everything is waiting for me.

I am working everywhere, and all the time.

And, I love to work, don’t get me wrong, but because I keep checking my iPhone for new email, and I keep visiting Facebook and Twitter for new mentions, I feel that I am not focused anymore. I have turned off all notifications, but I keep checking my phone anyway, and I keep adding new information to my phone all the time. I am not sure if I think I’ll be missing some very important information if I don’t check and if I don’t keep adding all my thoughts all the time. I do get a lot done this way, but…

The problem, is that my phone is always with me, and because it’s always with me, and since I have more or less all my business inside my iPhone, I’m always working. And I don’t feel that it’s always quality work I’m doing.

There are just too many awesome apps. It takes too much of my time, and it keeps me from doing quality work.

Six of my favorite business apps for iPhone

I know that using my iPhone all the time is killing my productivity, but still, it’s part of my marketing communication tools, and I really enjoy using it, and even though I’ll be focusing on using my iPhone a lot less from now on, I will still be using these six apps:

Evernote is my favorite tool for adding notes to my iPhone. I keep adding all sorts of thoughts and ideas every single day, and it’s not just what comes to my mind in meetings and about my business, but there’s a lot of personal stuff inside my Evernote as well.

Things is my favorite to-do app, it’s where I add all my tasks and what I need to get done. I keep track of everything I need to do in Things (and it syncs with Things on my Mac). This way I’ll never miss anything (hopefully).

iA Writer is my favorite text editor. I start writing whatever I am writing, like this blog post, on my iPhone, and when I get to the office, I’ll continue to write on my Mac, by using iA Writer on my Mac.

Mindnode Pro is my favorite mind mapping tool, and this is how I plot my novel, and it’s how I structure my thoughts and ideas. And, like the other apps, I am using it on my iPhone interchangeably with my Mac.

Reeder is my favorite way to keep track of the blogs I am reading. This is how I comment on blogs, and it’s how I read many blog posts.

Pocket is my favorite reading app for the iPhone, this is how I read not just blog posts, but all sorts of articles.

Staying away from the iPhone

I have written about how I am focusing on creating healthy habits in 2013, and the new healthy habit for April will be staying away from my iPhone. I will still be using it, but not as often as I am using it today.

9 responses to “My iPhone is Killing My Productivity”

  1. Jacob says:

    Our digital lives are devoid of mold as they become infinitely more sterile environments. And, Apple is the epitome of sterile environments, including Thought Police hovering in the background.. We can only consume.
    So, yes, power-users are crippling themselves. No different from how people knew cigarettes were unhealthy for years, it still took Decades before their popularity began to wane.

    • Hi Jacob,

      Thanks a lot for the feedback. What I have discovered is that I want to use my phone “all the time”, I am reading news, I am checking email, I’m doing everything, and I’m more or less unconscious – I am just doing it without thinking about it. Today, I am taking action, and I’ll be less on my phone, and hopefully that will make a difference to my business and personal life.

  2. Interesting. I love my iphone, and I find that I’m doing the same thing you are. Working all the time and feeling like I get less accomplished. However, I do not think I’m willing to detach. If anything, I plan to be more attached since I am a Google Glass Explorer. I’ll have to wait and see what type of difference it will make.

  3. i love my phone more than anyone does and i am gadget freak but this seems like i am loosing control my phone.. this article has lot of information that i doesn’t have

  4. Laura says:

    If I download on my computer those business apps that you’ve recommended can I install them later on my iPhone?

    • Carolyn says:

      Hi Laura, Yes, you can download those apps to iTunes on your computer and then they will install to your iPhone when you sync the phone to your computer.

  5. Sergio Felix says:

    Hey Jens, I used a $30 USD cellphone for years and I recently “upgraded” to a BlackBerry Curve but I still didn’t get any internet plans so you would be right if you say I only use it for calling people and receiving calls.

    However, I DO believe that if a smartphone is used wisely, it can definitely boost your productivity and creativity as well, the real question still remains in the owner…

    Are you more productive or more distracted from it?


  6. Use Evernote. Used to use Things … now I’m back to pen and paper and like it better 🙂 In fact, strangely enough, I’ve been using the iPhone less and less lately. Now I don’t feel naked if I leave it in another room 😉 I call that progress.

    • I call that progress too Craig. I am like you, a few days ago I was at a birthday part, and I didn’t bring my iPhone with me. That was the first time in years, and it felt really good 🙂

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