Book of the week: The Phone addiction workbook by Hilda Burke

The Phone addiction workbook by debut author Hilda Burke is an un-putdownable self-aid manual that is so effective in helping you to detox yourself from phone addiction that by the time you have finished reading it, you have lost interest in the smartphone altogether.

Despite my best efforts to keep away from phone distractions, I recently realised that I am actually hooked on the instant gratification effect from receiving notifications of friends’ messages and likes on social media.

But on the other hand, I am also an old-timer and, as such, I can have fun without devices. That saves me in a certain way. 

Hilda Burke’s brilliant book is absolutely eye-opening and helpful to break those detrimental habits. She has the expertise as she taps into her work as an experienced psychotherapist and couples’ therapist.

The workbook format is great as it forces you to write notes on your self-analysis and work in progress while you learn how to detach yourself from this unproductive habit. This manual is a simple Step-by-step Guide to Stop Endless, Useless and Anxiety-Inducing Checking, Swiping, and Liking Smartphone technology that has fundamentally changed the ways humans live, work, and communicate. But being always connected has trained people to constantly check in and instantly respond to messages.

While we don’t need to give up our smartphone completely, if our day to day is filled with endless, anxiety-inducing checking, swiping and liking, then we need this helpful, step-by-step workbook to take back control of your life.

Phone addiction is similar to gambling addiction and substance abuse. Its consequences include stress, depression, insomnia, intimacy issues and more.

I have talked about instant gratification with regards to children’s addiction to gaming platforms and apps such as Fortnite in two separate features:

How to help your child ‘resist’ the Fortnite charme

and

Irresistible – Why you are addicted to technology and how to set yourself free

This subject is both a fascinating as well as a worrying subject hence my quest to find solutions to help myself and my 13-year-old son to keep living a healthy lifestyle. 

Hilda’s workbook also includes weekly charts, practical tips and interactive activities to help us stop unhealthy behaviour and make lasting change. It also provides lots of great quotes on how to define and find happiness. 

My favourite one is by Ghandi in the chapter dedicated to Contentment:  

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.’

We can be fully happy when we are coherent with ourselves. With examples that stem from her daily work as a psychotherapist, Hilda shows that we tend to ‘distract ourselves from the useful insights we get via our emotions and from what’s going on in our bodies. We rely on the pacifier of the smartphone to defend against boredom or other unwanted emotions, putting off what’s important to us while equally never letting ourselves switch off.’

Stop scrolling and start living! This is the mantra that the boo teaches us. By building healthier relationships between ourselves, our smartphone and all our devices, we can reduce social media obsession, notification anxiety and other unhealthy habits.

Last but not least, this book is particularly special to me because Hilda Burke is also a friend. I have known her for the past 18 years and I have shared a few Eureka moments with her from the time when we used to work as telecommunications industry insiders and PR consultants. These eye-opening incidents were crucial to both of us in making fundamental career moves. I believe reading these insights might help anyone make important changes in their lives too.

You can find more info on Hilda online at @hbtherapist or hildaburke.co.uk.

The book is available from Amazon

Related features:

How to help your child ‘resist’ the Fortnite charme

Irresistible – Why you are addicted to technology and how to set yourself free

Digital detoxing on holiday

Reading for pleasure to rewire our brains – Chatting to Dr Hilary Jones about reading as a health retreat for the brain

A Mum’s ways to distract children from using the tablet, PC, iphone and ipads

About Monica Costa

Monica Costa founded London Mums in September 2006 after her son Diego’s birth together with a group of mothers who felt the need of meeting up regularly to share the challenges and joys of motherhood in metropolitan and multicultural London. London Mums is the FREE and independent peer support group for mums and mumpreneurs based in London https://londonmumsmagazine.com and you can connect on Twitter @londonmums

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