The Distraction Free iPhone

The Distraction Free iPhone

I first discovered the Distraction Free iPhone through the book Make Time by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky through the Bookworm Podcast by Joe and Mike.

Here’s a passage from the make time blog which led Jake to use a distraction free iPhone.

In 2012, I realized I had a problem. My iPhone made me twitchy. It called to me from my pocket, the way the Ring called Bilbo Baggins. My moment of clarity happened in my living room. I was sitting on the floor one evening, building train tracks with my kids, when my older son said: “Dad why are you looking at your phone?” He wasn’t trying to make me feel bad or anything. He was just curious. But I didn’t have a good answer. So why was I looking at my iPhone? I didn’t even remember taking it out — it had sort of materialized in my hand. All day, I’d been looking forward to spending time with my kids, and now that it was finally happening, I wasn’t really there at all. I froze for a second. I thought back. When the iPhone came out, in 2007, it was shiny and beautiful and cool and I flat-out wanted one. But I needed a justification, so I convinced myself that I needed it for work. After all, the iPhone had email, a web browser, and even a stocks app — this was a serious tool for serious people! So I got an iPhone, and just like that, I signed myself up to check and respond to email wherever, whenever. No pay raise, no new job title, not even a request from my boss. For me, this was a 100% self-inflicted responsibility because I wanted a shiny object. Over the years, as new apps came out — Facebook, Instagram, news, games, etc — I installed them. They were shiny, they were free, and they helped me “get my money’s worth” out of my phone. Every app created new responsibilities. More inboxes to check and more feeds to read. Every app latched onto my brain, tethering my phone to my skull with invisible string. So what’s the solution to make more time for what actually matters in life? Surprise, it’s the distraction free phone. There are only 7 steps which you have to take.

  1. Decide why you want more attention – For example, you might want to focus on your studies or your hobbies
  2. Set expectations -Inform colleagues and friends that you might be slow to respond to emails and text, ask them to call if it is important
  3. Delete social media apps
  4. Delete news apps
  5. Delete streaming video apps and games
  6. Remove web browsers – This might be hard to justify but trust me you will not regret it, if you really need it, you can simply enable safari in the settings
  7. Delete email and other “productivity” messaging apps – Try to use your computer to check your email only a few times during the day.

This is what my iPhone looks like now

On the first page, I only have my Phone app, Notion (Second Brain, Note-Taking, Content Management EPIC app) and Castro (My favourite Podcast app) in the dock.

On the second page, I have Libby (Audiobook and EBook app that connects to your local public library), Calendar (Experimenting with time blocking currently) and Habitica (My favourite Habit Tracker)

On the final page, I have a folder with a poop emoji with every other app.

However here is one question you might have about this “make your thousand dollar iPhone into a dumb phone concept”

Why have an iPhone when you are limiting its features? Why not have a dumb phone that does not cost a grand?

Firstly, I believe that even though you might not be using your phone to its “MAX” capacity, when you make it distraction-free you can add more value to your life than having all the infinity pools (apps which use up a lot of your time) available. Secondly, you are not missing out on the main features which you would use your phone for. For example, you can still use the amazing camera on your iPhone and share with your friends and family, you can still use the amazing speaker to listen to insightful and fun podcasts like Not Overthinking, The College Info Geek, That Creative Life and great audiobooks such as The Nightingale. The point is that you can still have the latest and greatest iPhone 11 Pro Max Ultimate Supreme Product Red phone but use it more efficiently. However, I highly doubt that you will want to upgrade every year when you use your phone more efficiently.

So, I hope you found this blog post interesting, thought provoking and insightful.

You can always contact me at to continue disscussing about the pursuit for the ultimate productivity applications, tools and habits 😀

Stay Epic,