founder & digital wellness coach

The Tech(less) Stack

A collection of the tools and tactics I used to reduce my screen time by 50% and curb my smartphone addiction.

Picture this: you're scrolling through your phone for the hundredth time today, mindlessly thumbing through social media feeds, barely even registering what you're looking at.

You probably don’t need to imagine it. Because you do it. Every single day.

At least I do.

As someone who runs their own content agency, being glued to my phone and laptop comes with the territory. But at some point, I realized that my digital addiction was getting out of hand. It was affecting my work, my relationships, and my overall well-being. I knew I needed to make a change.

So, I embarked on a journey to break free from the clutches of my smartphone and reclaim my time and attention.

In 45 days, I've slashed my smartphone screen time by a whopping 50%, saving myself around 2.5 hours every single day.

That's 75 hours a month that I can now invest in myself, my relationships, and all the activities that truly bring me joy.

My girlfriend did the same, dropping her screen time by 24%, freeing up over 50 hours per month to focus on more productive and fulfilling pursuits.

Fucking wild.

And you know what? I got more work done, my sleep improved, I spent more time outside enjoying the good weather, felt way calmer, and even my stress-triggered stomach issues died down significantly.

When I first set out on this journey, I had some clear goals in mind:

  1. Eliminate nearly all social media
  2. Specifically curb my addiction to Twitter
  3. Spend less time mindlessly scrolling and more time doing things I enjoy
  4. Improve my mental health and clarity

Like breaking any habit, it wasn't easy, and I still don’t consider it ‘broken.’ But it’s been fun to get creative with different tactics and strategies to see what worked and what didn't.

Now, I’m on a mission to help at least 1 million people build healthier, more intentional relationships with technology.

So if you’re reading this—welcome. Let’s get going.

To start, four simple changes are non-negotiable if you want to make this happen.

Delete The Distractions

First step: delete every distracting app from your phone. We're talking social media, games, and anything else that constantly pulls your focus away from what matters. Just get rid of them. It might be tough at first, but it's a crucial move if you want to take back control of your time and attention.

No Notifications

Notifications are toxic. They're constantly distracting you and pumping your brain full of dopamine. The goal is to get rid of almost every notification possible. I kept my Slack notifications because I still need to keep the lights on. But everything else had to go.

Do Not Disturb

I practically live in Do Not Disturb mode. Sure, it's annoying that all my calls go straight to voicemail, but I mainly use it to block out text notifications. Trust me, the pros definitely outweigh the cons. If you're expecting an important call, just turn it off for that day or time period.

Also, you can pick ‘favorites’ whose calls and messages automatically bypass DnD settings, so no excuses here. 

Turn on Grayscale

It's no surprise that most things aren't nearly as fun without color. Switching your phone to black and white (grayscale) is a great way to dull the stimulation and make your phone less appealing.

Pro tip: set up a shortcut on my iPhone that turns the screen to grayscale when I click the power button three times. It's a super simple way to switch between color and black-and-white modes, making it easy to cut down on the visual stimulation whenever I need to focus or give my eyes a break.

My Tech(Less) Stack

The above four strategies are the foundation for any digital detox, but after my previous failed attempts, I knew I needed tools and techniques that would introduce some serious friction and make it damn near impossible to fall back into old habits.

But remember, what works for me might not necessarily work for you. Each strategy needs to be thoughtfully tailored to your specific distractions, triggers, lifestyle, and so on. That said, my hope is that some of this will be relevant to your own journey.


Brick has been the most important and impactful tool during my digital disconnection phase. Unlike traditional distraction blocking software that lets you easily bypass apps, the Brick is a physical device that pairs with a mobile app.

The magic is in the fact that it's a physical device. You tap your phone on the Brick to lock your apps and do the same to unlock them. So, if I want to access any apps when I'm not near my Brick, I'm shit out of luck.

Pro-tip: Use 'RG10' to get $10 off your Brick purchase.


Unfortunately, the Brick doesn't do jack for my crippling laptop habit, which why I use Opal.

Opal is a simple distraction blocker software that works on both mobile and web.

Here's how it works:

  1. Make a list of the apps you want to block
  2. Set time limits for when you want those apps blocked
  3. If you try to access a blocked app on mobile, you'll get hit with a five-second delay before you can unblock it. On the web, it's even easier to get into your blocked apps – just click the 'take a break' button.

Even with this smaller dose of friction, Opal has been a lifesaver during my deep work sessions. It forces me to think twice before trying to access time-sucking apps like Twitter.

Blank Spaces

If you haven't heard of dumbphones, they're exactly what they sound like – no social media, no blue light, and no distractions. Most of them have e-ink screens and only offer basic functions like phone calls, texting, music, maps, and a few other bare-bones apps.

Dumbphones like the Lightphone and Wisephone (get $75 off with this link) are gaining popularity, and even Gen Z is starting to switch back to the flip phone era. What's old is new again.

I couldn't commit to a full dumbphone, but I did want to eliminate as much friction as possible from my home screen. That's where Blank Spaces comes in.

Blank Spaces is a dumbphone launcher for iOS. It uses Widgets and Shortcuts to make your home screen look like this:

It's a key part of my tech(less) stack. It looks cool, makes for a great conversation starter, and eliminates the color and red notification markers. But to be real with you, it probably wouldn't do much on its own since you can just swipe left and access all your apps anyway.

Have a Friend Change Your Passwords

I'm straight-up addicted to Twitter. I tried everything. The Brick kept it off my phone, but it didn't do anything for my laptop problem. Opal was too easy to bypass, and like clockwork, my brain would open my browser and hit 'T' + enter every single time I got even a hint of boredom lasting more than five seconds. This was hardwired into my muscle memory & subconscious.

So, I had my girlfriend lock the door and throw away the key (a.k.a. change my password and refuse to give it back to me no matter how often I flashed my baby blue puppy dog eyes).

You might be thinking, "Couldn't you have just gone through the 'forgot password' process?"

Sure, but I would've felt like a crackhead. And I don't like feeling like a crackhead.

Niche Social Accounts

The biggest issue with my Twitter addiction wasn't just the insane amount of time I was wasting on it (although that was pretty bad too). It was the way it made me feel.

Even though I know that 99% of those Stripe screenshots, Shopify dashboards, and topline MRR numbers are nothing but smoke and mirrors, it still got to me. 

That's a skill issue on my end, but I’m working on it.

Now, don't get me wrong, not ALL of Twitter is bad for me. Aside from learning and meeting new people, there are a few aspects that genuinely enrich my life and bring me joy. 

One of those is keeping up with the New York Knicks. If you don't know me personally, let me tell you, Knicks basketball is one of the three main reasons I wake up in the morning. And Twitter is the epicenter of Knicks basketball. 

I stupidly planned this digital disconnection during their most promising playoff run in the last 25 years, and there was no way in hell I was going to miss out on the Twitter commentary, injury updates, and press conferences.

But I also knew that if I stayed on my regular Twitter account, all my efforts would be shot. 

So, I made a separate account JUST for Knicks Twitter. I followed around 15 accounts – analysts, reporters, meme pages, and that's it. I never even glanced at the 'For You' tab and solely focused on the 'Following' tab.

For about 30 minutes after each game, I'd scroll through Knicks Twitter. But since I only followed 15 people and stuck to the 'Following' tab, there was only so much new content to consume. I plan to do this for other niche interests to eliminate doom scrolling & potential triggers.

Bottom Line

At the end of the day, technology is pretty incredible. It's definitely a net positive in our lives and despite what some looney-tunes people try to tell you online, there has never been a better time to be alive.

So I want to make one thing abundantly clear: I'm not telling anyone to go full Luddite and start living in a cave.

Like anything, moderation is important. 

It's all about being more intentional about your relationship with technology. Finding the right balance so that your technology serves you, not the other way around. My ‘brunson4life’ Knicks burner account is a perfect example of that.

If you're feeling inspired to start your own digital disconnection adventure, I highly encourage you to give it a shot. It's not always easy, but trust me, it's so worth it.

If you have any questions or want to learn more about the tools and strategies I mentioned, head over to I've put together a ton of resources there to help you get started and stay on track.

And if you're looking for some extra support and accountability, I offer 1:1 coaching sessions where we can dig deep into your specific challenges and come up with a personalized plan to help you break free from your digital addiction. Just shoot me a message, and we'll get you set up.