I love challenges. There’s nothing that forces growth quite like a good challenge does. This year I’ve tried to issue myself monthly challenges. Some months I complete them, like in June when I ate no sugar or carbs for the whole month, and other months I don’t, like this month (July) when I was supposed to not watch any Cubs games. The challenges are setup to force me to get out of my comfort zone by doing something that’s completely outside of my current conditioning. I’m excited August’s challenge so I’m going to share it with you.

In August 2017 I will only use my cellphone for communication. It feels like for the last several months I’ve been using my phone more and more to consume articles online. For the most part, these articles are news stories that don’t hold much value outside of the entertainment experienced while reading them. I could completely cut this practice out and lose very little enjoyment but gain a ton of time that can be used in other, possibly better, ways.


I will only use my cellphone for communication. Permitted forms of communication include, and are limited to, calls and text messages. Outside of communication, you are allowed to edit settings within the phone that better prevent you from using it and to take pictures.

Desired Outcome

Deeper work and thoughts. I want to potentially rewire my brain to stop craving novelty and the consumption of, typically, useless information. Ironically, one of the stories I saw on my phone this month was some research that claims that the presence of your phone can lower brain power. Maybe by not engaging with the phone I can get a little smarter.

Plan of Attack

I’m not going to bring my phone to work anymore. Having the phone there at break time would be too tempting to pass up so I’m not going to bring it there at all. Another step I’m taking is to disable all notifications. There are many apps that without having notifications will be forgetton about making the challenge all the easier. I will do some periodic updates here to measure the progress and to share any knowledge gained. It’s going to be a great month.