Almost half of American smartphone users “can’t imagine” life without their device, according to a series of new polls from Gallup. Here are some research-backed tips to kick the habit.
RECOGNIZE THE PROBLEM
It’s not just making you a poor dinner buddy. Studies have linked phone dependence to stress, anxiety and poor cognitive performance.
SET SHORT-TERM GOALS
Cold-turkey “digital detox” isn’t a long-term solution, says California State University’s Larry Rosen. Wean yourself off starting with a half-hour between stealing peeks.
SPREAD THE WORD
Giving your contacts a heads-up will alter their expectations–e.g., you won’t be able to like their Instagram pic instantaneously–and relieve the pressure to always be available.
SHUT IT DOWN BEFORE BED
Reading on a bright screen can delay sleep, cause less deep sleep and make you less alert the next day. Try an old-fashioned paper book instead.
This appears in the July 27, 2015 issue of TIME.
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