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'Phone phubbing' is the reason why your relationship is failing

Posted August 17

According to a recent study, checking your phone, instead of checking out your spouse, is hurting your relationship.

"Phubbing", as researchers call it, means ignoring your significant other, because you are distracted by your phone. It includes:

  • Always keeping your phone in plain sight
  • Glancing at your phone while you are talking
  • Checking you phone when there is a lull in the conversation
  • Holding your phone
You may not think that it's a big deal to check your phone when you're with your spouse, but it is.

Dr. James Roberts explains:

"Momentary distractions by one’s cellphone during time spent with a significant other likely lowers the significant other’s satisfaction with their relationship, and could lead to enhanced feelings of depression and lower well-being of that individual."

So if you want a better relationship, put your phone away.

If you get anxious being away from your phone, you may have an addiction. Here are some tips on how to detach yourself from your device:

1. Don't check your phone right when you wake up

Instead of scrolling through Facebook first thing in the morning, do something productive like exercise or meditate. You'll feel a lot better about the day.

2. Download a phone-usage tracker

You're probably not aware of how much time you actually spend on your phone. By downloading a smartphone-usage tracker, you can keep track of how much time you spend on your phone and work on cutting that time down.

3. Schedule social media time

Instead getting sucked into social media whenever you get bored, decide on two or three times a day when you can check all of your accounts, and then sign out for the rest of the day, so you don't get notifications.

4. Find other time fillers

If you find yourself reaching for your phone whenever you have free time, learn to fill that time with something else - like reading a book or working on a hobby.

5. Go on dates without your devices

Spend some quality time with your spouse without your phone, iPad, computer or kids. Look up the phone numbers to the places you're going and leave them with the babysitter (old school style). Your kids will be just fine, and your significant other will appreciate the quality one-on-one time.

No amount scrolling through Instagram or watching YouTube videos is ever going to make you as happy as being in a fulfilling, loving relationship. Show love to your spouse by putting your phone away.

Katelyn Carmen is the International Content Manager for the FamilyShare Network. She completed her MBA at Utah State University. She received her undergraduate degree at Brigham Young University-Idaho in English. Follow her on Twitter: @katelyncarmen

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