🔌 Unplug

Jan 29, 2024

8 min read

11 Screen-Free Activities to Unplug From Your Phone (Detailed)

11 Screen-Free Activities to Unplug From Your Phone (Detailed)

Unplug from your phone with 11 screen-free activities detailed in our guide. Boost productivity, regain focus, and combat distractions effectively to break free from phone addiction.

You've decided to take control of your screen time, and your motivation has never been higher. However, a lingering question remains: if I don't use my phone anymore, what am I going to do?

For many of us, the introduction of the telephone happened at an early age. We quickly adapted to its omnipresence, and every "empty" moment in our lives became occupied by a little scrolling or a short video. Over time, almost unknowingly, we became entirely dependent on this small portable object.

Without realizing it, we've let the years slip by, allowing our time, attention, and perhaps even our money to be consumed by platforms that may not have deserved it. Then comes the day when we decide to cut the cord and go solo. Yet, where does one begin? How do you navigate life without your phone? What alternatives are there?

These are common questions at Jomo. You've embarked on this journey, and it's proving to be more challenging than expected. For all those years, you might not have developed true interests or hobbies. So, when your precious device is taken away, what else can you do?

Rest assured, we're not going to let you down just yet! We've put together a list of 11 screen-free activities you can do, along with a whole host of great resources. So take your time to read this article, and don't hesitate to put it aside and come back to it whenever you need to.

Getting into Shape

Before jumping into the first activity, we'd like to share a few tips with you. Firstly, don't over-invest at the startneither emotionally nor financially. You have no idea whether you'll enjoy it, so don't put pressure on yourself and just be curious. You don't need the latest equipment to be a top performer; what counts above all is your motivation and willpower.

Next, don't fixate on the goal you want to achieve but on the road you're going to travel. Never forget where you're starting from and enjoy every moment of your journey. Don't have unrealistic or over-ambitious expectations. Aim low enough. That way, it will be easier to reach and therefore more motivating to keep going.

11 Things to Do Without Screens

📗 Read a Book/Magazine

You've seen this tip 100 times. But know that if it's so recommended, it's because it's actually beneficial. You don't have to start by reading a 1000-page novel. You can begin with a collection of short stories or a magazine.

⛑️ Benefits: Builds patience, enriches knowledge and vocabulary, relaxes.

Here are a few resources to help you get started if you're lost:

  • Digital Minimalism, Cal Newport: If your ambition is to reduce your screen consumption, this book might shed some additional light. The notion of "Digital Minimalism" is really quite interesting: through his travels and encounters, Cal Newport shares strategies to help you rethink your relationship with social networks, the rediscovery of a more disconnected world, and how to reconnect with yourself. What's interesting is that Cal Newport doesn't think technology is either "good" or "bad". For him, the essential thing is that it serves our goals and values. (Available in English and French)

  • Indistractable, Nir Eyal: If you're distracted by nature and have trouble finding motivation in your daily life, this is the book for you. In Indistractable, Nir Eyal explains how to regain control over distractions, giving you turnkey methods and a detailed analysis to help you. In particular, he explains that one of the most important things you can do is... work on yourself. In short, a must-have that's already helped thousands of people! (Available in English and French)

  • The Truth About the Harry Quebert Affair, Joel Dicker: This is not a productivity book but a novel. But not just any novel: the best I've ever read. For those who don't like to read: don't worry, this is a movie you're actually going to be immersed in. A homicide investigation played out in two timelines: the present and 30 years in the past. A simple book that keeps you on the edge of your seat until the very last pages. You go through all the emotions, searching with the protagonist: who's behind it all? I've read it far too many times, but every time I do, I just want to read it all over again (Available in English and French).

  • Wired Magazine: If reading scares you, and you're interested in tech and society, you might want to pick up an issue of Wired. It's a really interesting magazine that covers a wide range of subjects. There's also an online version (blog). The articles are often very rich, with personalities well versed in their subjects.

🥘 Cooking

You don't have to be a great chef to cook. In fact, the interesting thing about cooking is the journey. For a moment, you have to concentrate only on what you're doing; if you don't want to miss the recipe. And bonus: it's one of the few activities where the end is just as enjoyable as the journey!


⛑️ Benefits: Work on concentration, patience, and enjoyment.

Don't know what to do? You can either try your hand at very simple dishes or at pastry-making.

  • Jow: "Cooking for everyone" is clearly their motto. No need to be a pro; everything is explained simply (and even on video). Having tried their recipes and not being very good at them, the risk of failing is very low.

  • 750g: Clearly, this is my pastry reference point. This is where I get my pastry recipes. It's well explained, and the recipes are simple. Likewise, I recommend it. (For English speakers, feel free to "Translate the page" from Safari, next to the URL > ... > Translate)


🛸 Make a Time Capsule

This is a trend I've been seeing on YouTube. The concept is to leave yourself a sort of "note" to your future self. Yes, it may sound strange, but it's not. The idea is to ask yourself questions, to take an interest in who you'll be in 5, 10 years' time, and when the day comes to open the letter, you'll be able to look back on those past years and surely feel proud of yourself.

⛑️ Benefits: Relax, project yourself, boost your self-confidence.

Here's what you can write:

  • Take Stock of Where You Are Today: Where are you now? Who do you want to be? What are your difficulties? What are you proud of? Your ambitions/goals?

  • Ask Yourself: Where are you, the future me? What do you want now? Did we achieve what we wanted? What has happened?

  • Reassure Yourself: Talk about what you're proud of today, your life, in case things haven't turned out the way you wanted, send good vibes to your future self.

  • Set a Date When You Will Open This Letter and Seal the Envelope.

Don’t worry, TikTok will always be around

But your

won't wait.

Better Screen Time

Made simple. See by yourself.

⚡️

💜

🔒

⌨️

🌿

🌿

🌙

Don’t worry, TikTok will always be around

But your

won't wait.

Better Screen Time

Made simple. See by yourself.

⚡️

💜

🔒

⌨️

🌿

🌿

🌙

Don’t worry, TikTok will always be around

But your

won't wait.

Better Screen Time

All made simple. See by yourself.

⚡️

💜

🔒

⌨️

🌿

🌿

🌙

Don’t worry, TikTok will always be around

But your

won't wait.

Better Screen Time

All made simple. See by yourself.

🧩 Make Your Own Board Game

Playing is too easy, and you need people too. But what if you're alone? Well, invent your board game (to be played by several people later). Imagine the rules, the design, make it, and test it. You don't have to be ultra-creative; you can draw inspiration from existing games. It explains a lot of "derivatives" of popular games.

⛑️ Benefits: Boost creativity, work on patience, work on the notion of "effort".

Here are some games you can explore:

  • Investigation games

  • Card games (like Uno or Skyjo)

  • Manipulation games

  • Completion games

🗺️ Geocaching

Not into walking? Normal, not very exciting. Searching for treasure, on the other hand, is more fun. You can try your hand at Geocaching. It's all about finding (and leaving) little capsules hidden by people. The aim is to add a piece of evidence (a note, a micro-object) to the capsule. Good luck finding them - some are really hard!

⛑️ Benefits: Exercise, patience, observation, communication.

If you're looking for information on how to do this, go to this site that explains the routes ⚠️ Please take care when out and about, and don't put yourself in danger! Caches are often accessible.

🦢 Origamis

Not very good at creative activities? No problem, origami requires above all the skills of observation and patience. The material is relatively accessible: literally a sheet of paper. The activity allows you to really concentrate intensely and put your patience to the test. But what a skill to be able to show off your paper swan afterward.

⛑️ Benefits: Works on patience, observation, fine motor skills.

I'm sharing this resource with you anyway -the person is really talented. You don't have to start at her level; paper frogs are a good way to start.

✍️ Create your character

If you're not skilled at drawing, don't worry—this is for you too. If you don't believe me, believe Graham Shaw. The idea isn't to create ultra-realistic portraits but rather to delve into "Character Design." Create a character and almost bring it to life. Imagine drawing a character from all angles (front, profile, 3/4), in different situations (sad, happy, laughing, angry), perhaps in unlikely scenarios (stepping in dog poo, slipping and falling, under a punctured umbrella).

⛑️ Benefits: Enhances patience, observation, fine motor skills, imagination.

Come on, give it a try. I tried too. I warn you, I'm not a talented artist; I just let my imagination guide me.

🌷 Flower Study

Here again, we're going to tap into your artistic talents. The concept is simple: imagine you're a botanist who has just made a discoverya brand new flower. But what does it look like? It's up to you to draw it. Don't try to be realistic; it's not like any other flower in existence. Just let your mind wander, and let your pencil caress the paper. If you feel like it, you can even color it in.

⛑️ Benefits: Works on patience, observation, fine motor skills, imagination.

What do you think of my flower?

🤝 Get involved

If solo activities really aren't your thing, don't worry! There are numerous associations supporting various causes ready to welcome you. Whether it's helping people in need, animals, or the environment, your help would not be unwelcome! So don't hesitate to find out what's going on near you and get involved. The hardest part is the first step. No one will judge you for offering to help; on the contrary!

⛑️ Benefits: Helping others, socialization.

If you don't see the point in helping others, look at it another way: it'll be an extra line on your CV. Companies are 100 times more interested in someone who's dedicated to a cause, who puts themselves aside to help others, than someone who just sits at home on their sofa.

🏋️‍♀️ Do some sports

I can see you coming: "I don't like sport," "too hard for me." Yes, we can go on like this for a long time. Or we can stop right now and break the myth. Sport isn't about becoming an Olympic champion; it's about doing something that gets the cardio pumping and doing it regularly. Don't tell me that you don't like sport—given the number of disciplines out there; it's litterally impossible. The trick is to find YOUR thing. I saw this sentence in a gym one day, and it made me smile: "Today I ran-binge-watched my series." Because yes, in fact, while you're doing an activity, who said you couldn't watch a film? a series? listen to a podcast?

⛑️ Benefits: Take care of yourself, get active, reduce sedentary lifestyle.

Here are the most "affordable" sports (cost vs. fitness):

  • Running: start with 20 minutes at a very gentle pace (you should be able to talk while running), 2 sessions a week, then gradually increase the training DURATION (while keeping the same pace).

  • Swimming: If you're not comfortable, you can just swim a few lengths in the stroke of your choice, at your leisure. You can also try aquabiking (cycling... in the water! How cool is that?).

  • Yoga: a floor mat and a good YouTube tutorial, and you're off! There are even card games to choose your positions and define your session at random. Just to make it even more fun.

  • Hiking: If you don't have the equipment, choose a family trail. Hiking doesn't mean walking for 5 hours. 30min to 1h is enough. The idea is to work muscle and cardio on a variety of trails. Enjoy yourself!

  • Ball games: No need for a team, just enjoy playing with the ball in a public park. Just get the ball and get out there. No goals, just enjoy!

🪄 Practice magic

There are some skills that cause a stir in society, and magic is totally one of them. There's no such thing as a real magician—it's all neat tricks. Some of them are a lot easier than you might think. Why not give it a try?

⛑️ Benefits: Works on concentration, patience

Start with this video, and you'll want to keep going. Take my word for it.


Here are 11 fun activities to do. You can find other suggestions by installing our "Offline activities" widget created in partnership with Marguerite from Digibloom, a digital wellness coach. 100 activities are randomly suggested to help you unplug from your screens.

And of course, if you haven't already done so, don't forget to download the free Jomo app from the App Store, available on iPhone and Mac. And psssst, if you have any other ideas or if you'd like us to do another article like this one, don't hesitate to let us know in the chat room or on [email protected]!

✋ Illustrations by Jomo ; Photography Unsplash