An unhealthy relationship with technology can mean missed opportunities to connect with the real world. That’s why I wrote a book of 5,203 alternatives to looking at your phone.



a man sitting on a bench in front of a building: Johner Images/Getty Images


© Johner Images/Getty Images
Johner Images/Getty Images

  • Barbara Ann Kipfer is a lexicographer, archaeologist, and author of more than 80 books and calendars, including “14,000 Things to be Happy About.”
  • The following is an adapted excerpt from her new book, “5,203 Things to Do Instead of Looking at Your Phone.”
  • In it, she suggests striking a balance between your online and offline lives with alternative ways to reconnect with the world around you.  
  • Kipfer uses her expertise to help people examine why they’re mindlessly motivated to reach for screens, and how to restore a healthy relationship with activities that fill up your downtime.  
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I’m a listmaker. I’ve published 80+ books and calendars — mainly lists.  My editor came up with the idea of a list styled book with suggestions on what to do “instead of looking at your phone.” This brilliant focus resonated

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