How soon do you check your phone in the morning?

Read 263 answers below or select another question.

John Zeratsky · Author, Designer

I take a quick glance 20–30 minutes after waking up to check for emergencies or urgent messages from overnight. Around breakfast I use my phone to read a page from The Daily Stoic and maybe a couple articles in Feedly or Pocket.

But there’s really nothing to “check”—I keep a distraction-free phone with no email, social media, news, or other infinity pool apps—so I don’t feel a compulsion to reach for my phone.

Kate Nafisi · Designer, Finisher

I have a beautiful 1950s wind-up wristwatch bought on eBay. I place it by my bedside so I can look at its unique handmade face to tell the time and avoid picking up my phone. I play a game with myself to see how long I can not look at my phone in the morning. On a really good day I’ve had my matcha tea, chanted, finished my breakfast, listened to an audiobook for thirty minutes… and then I check messages and emails.

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Josh Gross · Founding Partner at Planetary

Since my phone is also my alarm, it’s difficult—but I really try not to fall into the pattern of checking my messages first thing. I put my phone as far across the room as possible the night before to force me out of bed when the alarm goes off, which helps quite a bit. I can more easily convince myself to turn off the alarm, put the phone down, and head into the kitchen once I’m already standing up.

Paul Murphy · Third Grade Teacher

Usually before I say a word to my wife. How’s that for Husband-of-the-Year material? In my defense, I have to pick the thing up to hit snooze, and it’s hard not to notice the blinky light.

Carly Stein · Founder of Beekeeper’s Naturals

Many days I’ll check my phone 10-15 minutes after I wake up. I’m working on this, but it’s hard for me not to reach for it, especially since half of my team is on the east coast and they are well into their workday by the time I’m awake.

Shirley Meerson · Wellness Coach

I only turn on my phone in order to use it for reading selections on some of my feeds. Not news, fun stuff. Can be the latest song from YRF, or something on NHK-World showing some cultural snippets.

Sarah Morgan · Digital Strategist

I hate to say it, but if the boyfriend is already off to work or still asleep, I take a quick spin through Instagram pretty much right away. However, I’m pretty good at limiting the people I follow to those who inspire and motivate me, so it does help to put me in the right mood for the day.

Sam Crawford · Blogger, The Man Blueprint

I try to wait until 11:00am along with my emails. There’s no real point in checking before then, is there? What have I missed? If there was an emergency overnight, someone would have found a way to get in touch, and the only notifications I tend to have are new tweets from people I don’t really care about.

I find this time is best for concentrating on my own life before getting knee-deep in other people’s timelines later in the day.

Jean Chatzky · Financial Editor, The Today Show

It’s my alarm clock, so if I’ve gotten any silent alerts during the night, I see them first thing. I keep my phone on my nightstand but upside down, so that I don’t see any alerts flashing at me in the middle of the night. The most important people in my life know the number of my landline. If they need me, they can get me.

Gideon Akande · Celebrity Fitness Trainer

First thing in the morning, I check text messages, email, and social media in case there are any urgent schedule changes or important matters to attend to. If there is nothing pressing, I’ll glance at it throughout the course of the day and respond when I’m able to sit down at a computer and be more productive.

Lauren Berger · Founder of Intern Queen

First thing to see if there are any urgent texts or missed calls; usually, there’s not, unless a team member is running late or sick. I’m trying to train team members to not come to me with those types of texts.

Sabrina Zohar · Co-Founder of Softwear

I hate to admit it, but I check my phone pretty much immediately. As a business owner, I have to be the one to take charge and solve all problems. I usually check my phone to see if there are any pressing matters; if there is nothing, I’ll snooze for a few minutes before getting my meditation started.

With my anxiety I like to know what is going on and where my attention needs to lie soon after waking up.

Liz Fosslien · Illustrator

Immediately. I know it’s bad, but it feels so good. I need to see if I’ve gotten more Instagram likes. (Shoutout to my Instagram followers—you keep me tired!)

Jules Clancy · Cookbook Author

I usually don’t turn it off airplane mode until just before I go for my walk. I take my phone on the walk to listen to audiobooks or music, but I don’t check it while I’m walking.

Catherine Duc · Grammy-Nominated Composer

I check it while having breakfast. That said, as soon as I finish eating, I turn the internet off so I don’t get distracted. I do listen to podcasts as I get ready, though.

Nicole Gibbons · Interior Designer

Technically, I grab my phone right when I wake up to use the previously-mentioned apps to guide my morning meditations. It’s hard to resist responding to notifications, but I try to hold replies until after I’m up and dressed, unless something is urgent or time-sensitive.

Jeremy Anderberg · Editor and Podcast Producer

Right away when I wake up, since my phone is my alarm. I read emails, some overnight sports scores, and maybe a quick scan of news headlines. That all happens in about five minutes.

I know this is contrary to popular opinion, but I don’t find my phone to be a morning distraction or anything. I’m fairly cynical about the state of social networking and the internet in general (even though it’s what provides my living), so I don’t get sucked in to that stuff. I actually sort of like at least reading my emails right away, if for nothing else than to think things through for the next couple hours and have a general idea of what stuff I might need to work on that day.

Sabrina Hall · Multidisciplinary Designer

My alarm is on my phone, so I do see texts right away, but I try not to check emails or anything else until later. I also do not have any push notifications on my phone, which helps.

Dempsey Marks · Personal Trainer

While I do check my phone when I wake up, I have a pretty strict policy with myself to only glance at it. I don’t respond to texts or calls until I’ve started my day. I also don’t check social media until at least thirty minutes after I’ve woken up.

Zara Terez Tisch · Co-Founder of Terez

Immediately. It makes David very upset; he believes that it isn’t healthy for my emotional well being or for my eyes to be looking at a phone screen as soon as I wake up in the morning.

Dr. Anthony Youn · Plastic Surgeon

Unfortunately, like many, I check it first thing. I need it to turn my alarm off, but right afterwards I check to make sure there is nothing urgent that occurred overnight. (Usually there isn’t!) Then, I briefly check out Instagram. I enjoy looking at interesting photos that have been posted while I was asleep.

Danette May · Health and Mindfulness Expert

Around 7:00am I briefly glance at my phone to see if anyone has contacted me. My messages are typically from family and friends, but at times I get texts on critical work-related items.

Ashley Eckstein · Actress, Fangirl Trendsetter

I usually check my phone right away. I do enjoy catching up on Instagram and Facebook in the morning. I find it relaxing, and that’s how I keep up with family and see adorable photos of my nieces and nephews.

Julien Smith · CEO of Breather, Author

I lightly scroll through my phone first thing, but aside from that I don’t really use it until approximately 9:00am. Before then, I try to focus on the tasks that will give me the highest likelihood of a productive day. Email and most other stuff doesn’t fall into that category.

Des Traynor · Co-Founder of Intercom

Within ten minutes of being awake. I know I shouldn’t, but we have three offices in Dublin, Chicago, and San Francisco, so waking up usually means that stuff has happened that I’d like to be aware of.

Mitch Joel · Founder of Six Pixels Group

I’m pretty bad about that. I know it’s an unhealthy strategy, but I do check it quite often. No notifications are on; I don’t have it notify me, ever. If I’m up and can’t sleep or if I’m doing stuff in the morning, I might quickly flick through my phone, but I don’t really focus on it.

Ali Bonar · Co-Founder of Kween

Ugh, I’m the worst at this. As soon as my beady little eyes open, the first thing I do is check my phone. I don’t even know what day it is, yet here I am, scrolling Instagram. In my defense, I publish my Instagram posts in the morning, so you know … I “have to.”

Aubrey Marcus · CEO of Onnit

Just like email, I check my phone immediately. I don’t respond to anything immediately unless it’s urgent. But it’s more stressful for me not to check my phone than just to check it, make sure my company or my relationship isn’t burning down, and then I can get on with my morning routine.

Derik Mills · Founder, CEO of YogaGlo

I check both email and Slack on my phone either during or after my first tea. I also recently got in the habit of checking the air quality via the BreezoMeter app before I do outdoor exercise. And I use my iPhone timer to time my meditations.

Eliza Blank · Founder, CEO of The Sill

Pretty much first thing, since it is my alarm. I also like to read the news on my phone while I eat breakfast. It’s too hard for me to part with my phone because it’s the most convenient tool in my life right now.

Joel Gascoigne · Co-Founder and CEO of Buffer

I check it immediately for any urgent email and then don’t check it again until after exercising. During breakfast I often use it to catch up on social media and read articles using Pocket, which I then add to Buffer to post interesting articles and my comments on social media.

Lior Arussy · CEO of Strativity

Thirty minutes to an hour after I get up, unless something urgent is pending or I expect something from our international offices. It’s just a guideline, of course. We are all human, and during stressful periods I may check it right away.

Brent Gleeson · Navy SEAL Veteran

Only after making the bed, getting dressed, and ensuring I have what I need ready for the day. I find that checking email too soon or too haphazardly can lead to things falling through the cracks. I like to either be at my desk or in a car (not driving of course) with my notepad ready to go. Answering email on the fly while the day is getting started means you’re multitasking, which means you’re doing several things poorly all at once.

Melanie Deziel · Branded-Content Strategist

Since my phone is my alarm, I see it fairly quickly after waking, but I really try not to get sucked in. I shut off the alarm, and then set it aside until my breakfast-time email audit to check for schedule changes.

Kara Goldin · Founder of Hint Inc

I check my phone immediately upon waking up. Running a company means there are a lot of moving parts to manage, so it’s essential that I’m tuned in to everything going on and available to my staff. Once I know what the priorities are for the day I can unplug a bit to enjoy my hike and family time.

Jing Wei · Illustrator

Somehow, as I’m in the process of snoozing and dealing with my orchestra of alarms, my phone migrates closer and closer to me until it’s directly under my pillow. So I would say, in all honesty, checking my phone is the first thing I do in the morning.

Leigh Martinuzzi · Blogger, Podcaster

I usually check it first thing for the weather forecast, but other than that I leave it until my morning routine and other priorities are taken care of. Like email, I only check it when I am waiting for something that is critical to my morning or day, and therefore cannot wait.

L’Oreal Thompson Payton · Blogger, Freelance Writer

Because I read devotionals and listen to meditations using apps on my phone, it’s pretty inevitable that I’ll glance at my notifications, but I don’t usually check them until I’m on the bus. I make a point to put my phone on “Do Not Disturb” mode every night from 10:00pm until 10:00am so I’m not distracted by the pings.

Jason Vo · Publisher

Almost immediately for a quick scan. But enabling “do not disturb” until noon has helped greatly with liberating me from my phone.

Samir Becic · Fitness Expert

Around 6:30am, after breakfast. But it depends on if I’m expecting some important information. With my new book, I check my phone more often in case interviews like this pop up!

Drew Logan · Fitness Expert, Trainer

I usually check text messages first thing upon waking up. Those who know me know that text is the best way to catch me, and that if there’s an emergency I’ll likely notice it if they text me.

Melanie Travis · CEO, Andie Swim

It’s the very first thing I do. I open my eyes and check my phone to see the time and to make sure there’s nothing urgent on the notifications screen.

Sean Conlon · Real Estate Entrepreneur

Immediately! With so many different projects and company endeavors going on all at once, I make sure to stay on top of any email or phone calls first thing in the morning. It’s important for me to be in constant communication with my team.

Matthew Weatherley-White · Managing Director, The CAPROCK Group

I try to ignore it for as long as possible, but I usually end up looking at text messages and email while my water is boiling, so I’d say within the first twenty minutes of the day. But - and this is important - I have a personal “no phone in the bedroom” rule that is absolutely inviolable and saves me from the humiliation of checking my phone before even getting out of bed.

Kristen Ulmer · Fear Specialist

Not until at least 10:30am, sometimes noon. I’m not very attached to my phone, unlike most people. I forget it at home all the time. Often, I don’t think about it for an entire day, and when it rings, half the time I don’t even check to see who’s calling. It drives my husband nuts. I’m very attached to my computer, though.

Jenny Blake · Author, Career/Business Strategist

I make a point not to check my phone or email until after getting my most important work done, so sometimes that is as late as 10:00am.

A few years ago that would have made me feel really anxious, but after six months of doing this I have realized there is almost nothing that comes in that can’t wait until 10:00am. Otherwise it would just disrupt my enjoyment while reading, distract me during meditation, or tempt me into starting my day by reacting to work and others’ requests, not proactively doing what I have determined is important to me.

If you are wondering, yes… I am often behind on email! I don’t like it, but at the same time, when will we not be behind on email? It is 24/7 and relentless! I’ve had to learn to stop caring if I think I am taking too long to reply. Almost everything can wait, and very little is truly urgent.

James P. Owen · Forty-Year Wall Street Veteran

I look at my phone soon after I get up, but I don’t need to check it constantly because it’s not a smartphone. I much prefer old-fashioned flip phones. I have two, so there’s always a backup if one needs charging.

Tammy Strobel · Writer, Photographer

I’ll usually scroll through my Instagram feed when I make coffee. It doesn’t take very long to look at the photos. From there, I focus on journaling, taking my daily photo, and enjoying my morning view. I try to keep screen time to a minimum in the morning.

Hitha Palepu · Writer, Entrepreneur

I try to keep my phone on airplane mode from 8:00pm to 8:00am. I always journal, meditate, and make the bed before I turn off airplane mode, and I’m working on getting in my work or workout before checking my email.

Jillian Michaels · Health, Wellness, Fitness Expert

As soon as I get out of bed. Again, as a business owner, this is simply par for the course and comes with the territory. It’s important to know if there is a problem brewing, and putting fires out early and quickly is a big component of success.

Ravi Raman · Executive Career Coach

I disabled all notifications (except calls and SMS) and removed all social apps from my phone. So at this point, my phone is mostly used as a clock. I don’t even have email on my phone!

That said, I do look at it relatively early in the morning, around 5:30am on most days, to see if I have any missed calls from family that are important.

Nick Tasler · Organizational Psychologist, Columnist

Hmm. I use my phone first thing in the morning, but I don’t check it (e.g., check messages). Allow me to explain:

My phone is my bedside clock, and lately I’ve also been doing reading plans on the Bible app first thing in the morning. However, I’ve taken precautions to protect myself from getting sucked into the smartphone distraction trap. I have disabled notifications for all apps. I have moved all messaging apps (Gmail, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, WhatsApp, etc.) to the last screen on my phone. If I want to check my messages, I have to intentionally scroll three screens over and individually open each app. I’ve put in enough behavioral hurdles that I now rarely think about checking messages until later in the morning.

Mike Vardy · Founder of Productivityist

It depends, but definitely not first thing. I’ve arranged my schedule so that the earliest I’ll have a coaching call or meeting is 11:00am, so I’ll usually check it before then but not much earlier.

Leen Al Zaben · Writer, Food Stylist, Photographer

As soon as I wake up. We have a family chat that I check first - my immediate family members live all over the world, so it’s one of the ways I stay up to date on what everyone is up to. I then check my calendar to see what my day looks like, followed by my inbox.

Confession: I also check Instagram - that’s the best way to wake myself up.

Nikki Pechet · VP of Marketing, Thumbtack

It’s always the first thing I check when I wake up. I scan my email to make sure there are no emergencies and then try to quickly put it away until I am at work. If there is something urgent, I deal with it from bed so it doesn’t weigh on me once I’m with my kids.

Shawna Kaminski · Fitness Coach

It’s not the best idea, but I do check my phone every morning - I always want to make sure my kids are fine.

When my daughter was in Australia for fifteen months, we texted a great deal - with the time change there were always messages sent overnight. Even now, it’s my habit to check to see if my kids need anything in the morning.

The other thing is that I have a gratitude partner. Every night we text each other a message containing something we’re grateful for. I go to bed earlier and send my message first, so I always check for my partner’s message first thing in the morning (but I don’t respond).

Terri Schneider · Endurance Athlete, Author

My phone is my clock so I am generally aware of what is happening on it, though I do silence it at night (and often forget to turn the sound on until later). I usually take a look at it right away but generally don’t act on anything. I just look and then head to my workout.

My goal in the morning is to be mindful of what I am doing in the moment. For example: “Now I am running in the early morning light. Later I will attend to my phone. It will be there when the time comes.” It is quite easy for me to step away from it. Singularly being in what I am presently doing is a discipline and, I believe, a valuable one. The phone can be a distraction, but it can also be a tool to teach mindfulness (or not).

Erin Loechner · Author, Parent

I always peek over to see what time it is and that’s generally it. I prefer my laptop to my phone, so I’ll get started on computer work right away.

Guy Tal · Landscape and Nature Photographer

When I’m home I check emails and text messages on my laptop computer shortly after I wake up. To the extent possible I like to clear my mailbox of urgent messages before I start my work so I don’t have to worry about it later.

I use my phone more often in the field as it is more convenient than a laptop, but some days I’ll deliberately avoid checking messages altogether.

Danny Gregory · Artist, Author

Since my son graduated and moved out, my parental anxiety gets the better of me and I glance at my phone while I’m getting out of bed, just to see if the police left me a text message.

Liesl Gibson · Pattern Designer

Usually right away to check the weather, see how much sleep I got, etc. I might look at email, but generally I don’t address it until later.

Steph Davis · Free Soloist, Wingsuit BASE Jumper

I check my phone all the time because social media is a big part of what I do. I look at it before I go out to exercise in the morning because it gives me a heads up on what I’ll need to prioritize when I get back and sit down at my desk.

Sol Orwell · Co-Founder of

Considering I have no social media or email on my phone, not that soon. I’m also terrible at texting, so often I just answer via WhatsApp or iMessage on the computer.

Shane Parrish · Founder of Farnam Street

I try not to. If anything I’m working on or doing is high priority or if there is an emergency, people will know how to get ahold of me. Otherwise, I try to keep it aside and not let it distract me.

Victoria Durnak · Artist, Sculptor

I check my email during breakfast, but on my iPad. I rarely receive texts or calls, so I often misplace my phone (to my husband’s confusion).

David Cancel · Entrepreneur, Investor

One thing I haven’t mentioned yet is my phone, and that’s intentional. I only pick up my phone to check in and see what’s happening after I’ve finished everything in the morning (yoga, reading, family, etc.). I try to be proactive in the morning instead of immediately picking up my phone and reacting to whatever is there.

Isabel De Los Rios · Certified Nutritionist

I check my phone as soon as I wake up. Because I shut it off around 8:00pm, I will often have some texts from my sister or friends from the night before. They all know I shut my phone off and know I’ll see their texts in the morning.

Since I don’t get a lot of email, I don’t really look at my emails until I get in front of the computer.

David Kadavy · Author

Like email, I try not to check my phone until after my first meal. I leave it facedown on a table in Do Not Disturb mode overnight. My phone is not allowed in my bedroom.

Sonia Rao · Singer-Songwriter

When I go to sleep I put my phone on airplane mode. Sometimes I don’t check my phone until after meditating/writing.

I don’t keep Facebook or any social media apps on my phone. When I used to have Facebook on my phone, it was a terrible thing to check as soon as I woke up; rather than waking up and being with my own thoughts and mood for the morning, I would know about everyone and their moms’ lives before 9:00am. And that’s not how I want to start my day; no offense to everyone’s moms.

Tiffany Pham · Founder, CEO of Mogul

I check my phone throughout the morning to ensure I’m as communicative as possible with our team. Half of our executive team is composed of early birds and half is composed of night owls.

Jess Weiner · Social Entrepreneur

I try not to look before 8:30am, but I have been known to sometimes check it while I’m up in the middle of the night peeing. Is that normal?!?

Katelin Jabbari · Googler, Parent

I use my phone’s alarm, so technically first thing in the morning to turn it off (or snooze it). Then I’ll bring it with me into the kitchen to browse news and email while I pump.

Rachel Binx · Data Visualizer, Artist

Right after turning off my alarm - I’ve read that this isn’t the healthiest thing to do, but checking my email/notifications gets my head immediately into a productive mode instead of wanting to lay around in bed.

Taylor Davidson · Entrepreneur, Photographer

Sadly, I check it nearly instantly after waking up. It sits next to my head on my nightstand, and thus it’s often the first thing I look at, even as I’m still waking up.

I start off by checking the weather to see what conditions will be like for my dog walk or run that morning, and then I do my usual scan of important email. I know that checking email right away is a bad thing because it’s generally bad to introduce a lot of different thoughts into my mind right at the beginning of the day. But I answer what I want and archive or snooze the rest until later in the day. I don’t spend a lot of time thinking about what I can’t take care of right away, and I’d like to believe that it doesn’t detract from my mental focus for the day.

What I don’t do is check social media in the morning. I don’t have notifications turned on and I have an essentially blank home screen, so I don’t just open my phone and scan mindlessly through a bunch of apps that have things they want to tell me. I check the weather, I check my email, and I close my phone.

Manuel Lima · Designer, Author

I tend to take a glance soon after I wake up to see if there’s anything urgent, but since that’s usually not the case, I only check it again on my way to work.

Ann Handley · Author, CCO of MarketingProfs

I try to not check any notifications until I am actually upright. Otherwise, it just prolongs the whole business of getting out of bed, which frankly is prolonged quite enough as it is.

Craig Ballantyne · Author, Fitness Expert

I check it immediately, but I don’t actually receive email on my phone, so there’s not much to check. But I do send out important morning messages. Each day, before 5:00am, I send out a “PEXT” to my coaching clients.

What’s a PEXT? It’s a nickname for “Pester Texting,” since the coaching message is designed to pester them into action, to motivate them, to help them overcome procrastination, and to focus on what really matters in life.

I send the PEXT while drinking my morning “immunity” drink (see below).

Dustin Senos · Designer and Engineer

For a while I had a rule where I didn’t allow myself to look at any ‘screen’ before I left the house. No phone, computer, or TV. I felt great when I was doing this, but unfortunately I’ve slipped into looking at my phone in the morning.

I rarely, if ever, look at my phone while laying in bed. If I do look at my phone, it’s while I’m eating breakfast (which makes me sad to even type).

Jake Kahana · Artist, Creative Director

I’ve learned that my phone is such a distraction from anything productive. I actually start my day out more stressed if I check it immediately. So I turn the alarm off, carry it with me to the bathroom, and leave it there to go write and get ready. When I come back to brush my teeth, I’ll pick it up again.

Steve Kamb · Founder of Nerd Fitness

I don’t sleep with my phone in my bedroom, but I’ll grab it first thing in the morning to use the Sonos app and get music going immediately upon waking up.

I have all notifications turned off on my phone, don’t have Facebook on my phone, and do whatever I can to not check Instagram, Twitter, etc, but it happens from time to time.

Jeff Morris Jr. · Director of CRM and Engagement, Tinder

I check my phone on the walk to yoga - mostly to see if I have any important text messages. As I mentioned, I try to avoid my email because that stresses me out before my workout, and I’d rather respond to messages when I’m feeling more awake.

Morgan Jaldon · Marathon Runner

I check it as soon as I wake up. It’s my alarm! I just check email and Facebook first thing. Then when my eyes get adjusted to the light I get out of bed.

Gregg Carey · Entrepreneur, Survivor Contestant

Immediately. It’s my clock.

This is an area that I could work on. I have been researching different ways to wake up, but haven’t pulled the trigger on any. As long as Rufus continues performing, I should be all set. My wife is also due in four and a half months, so I imagine I’ll be reimagining this entire schedule as a parent.

Danielle Buonaiuto · Soprano

​First thing. What am I dealing with today? ​But I don’t absorb it, as I’ve said - it’s more for mental preparation.

Elizabeth Royal · Street Style, Fashion Photographer

It’s the first thing I do.

My family is halfway around the world from me. We have a group chat so when the alarm goes off I see if I missed any family conversation that happened while I was sleeping. Then I look at Instagram and emails before getting out of bed.

Johnny FD · Entrepreneur, Frequent Traveler

I wait until I’ve completed my morning rituals before I turn my phone off of airplane mode. But even then, since I’ve disabled all notifications except for personal messages and new order notifications, I only receive good news in the morning and don’t get bombarded with Facebook, Twitter, or email messages.

If I wake up with even one new order, I know that my bills for the day are already paid and everything I do from that point on is a bonus. This really settles my soul.

Louisa Rogers · Business Trainer, Writer

I’m not much of a phone person, and I don’t own a smartphone. I know myself… I’m prone to drama anyway, I don’t need more of it. I guard against the intrusion and false sense of urgency that smartphones invite.

Yuko Shimizu · Japanese Illustrator, Educator

When I have breakfast, but only to browse Facebook or Instagram to check what my friends are up to. The only push notification I get on my phone are calls and text messages. I think I’d go crazy if notifications were always popping up on my phone.

Ash Huang · Writer, Designer, Illustrator

I used to start off the day full of anxiety after scrolling through my Twitter feed.

Nowadays I try not to interact with it too much until I’m ready to work. I hate the idea of any human being available to everyone 24/7, especially to people who aren’t actively trying to get in touch, such as through passive status updates on Facebook.

Andre D. Wagner · Photographer

I’ll check my phone before I leave the house, for sure, but I try not to check it while I’m in bed.

When I’m just waking up I like to keep a space for my own thoughts and ideas. Sometimes it’s nothing, and that’s totally fine. On occasions I’ll think of something that will add to a project I’m working on, or simply just reflect on something that impacted me, whether that be an interaction from photography or just a personal exchange. When I wake up, checking my phone is not a priority of mine.

Aiste Gazdar · Co-Founder, Director of Wild Food Cafe

Aside from turning my alarm off, the first things I check on my phone, around 8-9:00am, is various social media updates for Wild Food Cafe. I am just way too curious and excited about the communications coming from our community on different social media platforms; photos, videos, press, or articles that have been published about us; so I do that.

Sara Rosso · Director of Marketing at Automattic

My phone is my alarm, so I’ll have it close at hand, but I don’t let my phone act as my task manager. I’ve never been one to allow complete access to myself through my phone - I don’t have work or personal email installed on my phone, I try to keep time speaking on the phone to near zero, and I have notifications turned off for almost all of my apps. I even moved work apps to the second screen on my phone so I’m less tempted to open them when I’m not working.

With that being said, it’s not that I’m not trying to interact with people, I just think there’s a time and place for those things - I really dislike Facebook Messenger, for example, and refuse to install it on my phone (and only use the desktop version). I’m pretty findable online through my various profiles and have several places where people can contact me and interact - email is definitely my preferred route of contact.

Early morning, I’ll usually scan Instagram quickly for some visual stimulation and open Feedly (an RSS reader) to catch up on some of the sites I follow.

Fanny Moizant · Co-Founder of Vestiaire Collective

It’s almost the first thing I do. I really feel addicted some days because it’s the last thing I do before falling asleep at night and the first thing I do in the morning… but I can’t stop myself!

Grace Bonney · Founder of Design*Sponge

Not until I’ve fed the pets, had a glass of water, and watered the plants. I don’t look at my phone after 9:00pm and don’t look at it again until usually around 9:00am.

Ben Brooks · Tech Writer, iOS Project Manager

Right away. It’s my alarm, so I see it. Typically I won’t unlock the phone, so I just glance over the notifications on the lock screen. If nothing seems urgent I don’t look at it until I am dressed and ready.

I am very frugal with what apps can send me push notifications, and for what reasons, so typically it is important (relative to me) if I have a notification on my phone.

Chris Baker · Golf Player, Podcast Host

This may amaze you, but I don’t have a phone at the moment. I think they are a curse of our century.

At the moment I’m on a full detox diet. I have zero tolerance if someone brings out a phone over a dinner table. I think it may be one of the rudest things you can do. It not only shows disrespect to the people with whom you are with, but it just informs me that you are thoroughly uninteresting.

They also consume what you see, and you forget to appreciate what is actually around you. Watch people in a restaurant, they are all either on their phones or even worse they take a picture of their food before they smell or try it. You can spend your entire life entrapped by them, and they’ll only end up making you miserable.

Of course, this may be a bit extreme, but try going one day a week without screens. Meaning no computers, no televisions, no phones. I went two years through college with no phone, it was probably the most social time in my life. Trust me, you can get by.

Oleksandr Kosovan · Founder, CEO of MacPaw

There are only two things that can wake me up in the morning: the day’s news in my iPhone and CleanMyMac statistics in my MacBook.

To be fully awake, I need to see some data that will grab my attention. In the morning I open my eyes, stretch my hand, reach around for my gadgets, unlock them, and scan the news until something wakes me up.

Courtney Boyd Myers · Founder,

It’s unfortunate that I have to check my phone first thing in the morning to see the time and use it for meditation. I’m currently working on a solution to this problem; stay tuned!

Dan · Parent, Founder

I won’t check my phone until after I’ve had a shower. As soon as you check in on Twitter or email you’re thinking and responding to other people’s problems and agendas before your own and that can really screw you up.

Ryan Holiday · Bestselling Author, Writer

Without email to check, there is very little reason to check my phone in the morning besides maybe my calendar—but I try to do that the night before.

I don’t keep Facebook on my phone and I don’t use any apps with alerts. The idea is that the phone answers to me rather than the other way around.

Chase Night · YA Author, Reader

I’m not a high-volume call or text kind of guy either, but I check my Facebook and Instagram immediately. It distracts me from climbing back into bed right away. With enough notifications to look at, I might not even snooze! (Hint, hint, follow me on Instagram and like stuff while I sleep so I can be a more productive human.)

Jordan Bishop · Canadian Entrepreneur

I check my phone shortly after my meditation, but only to see if I have any text messages from friends. Email and all of my other apps can wait until later in the day.

Paula Borowska · Author, Blogger, UX Designer

If I’m waiting for something, like if one of my articles was published the night before, then I check it right away. If not, I still check it right away. I hate that so much! I’ve been trying to kick the habit but it’s a tad difficult.

I think I found a way to help myself with this by simply leaving my phone far away, such as in another room. Here is my dilemma: my only alarm clock is my phone. If I don’t have an alarm set I can sleep 10-12 hours per night, no problem.

Abby Stewart · Teacher, Writer, Fun-Raiser

I check my email and social media while I’m still lying in bed. My job doesn’t necessitate a large amount of emails, so it’s purely for social reasons that I login. I follow a lot of overseas Instagram accounts and I like to see what the world was up to while I was sleeping.

I also get an email newsletter called theSkimm delivered daily; it summarizes international news highlights and keeps me abreast of current events without my having to wade through various news outlets.

Mike Moloney · Entrepreneur, Web Designer

I will occasionally read a few articles on my phone in the mornings or evenings. Most of my communication at this point is by email so I really try to stay away from my phone if I don’t need to use it.

Sometimes I splurge and spend hours on Netflix, but don’t hold that against me.

Doug Belshaw · Parent, Non-Profit Web Literacy Lead

The first thing I do is check BBC News, the Wikipedia front page and Hacker News on my Kindle’s web browser. When I first wake up and I’m getting used to the fact it’s a new day, my eyes can’t take anything with a backlit screen.

While I’m getting breakfast ready and checking emails, I also check and respond to messages on Twitter. My Twitter network is even more distributed than my colleagues!

James Clear · Entrepreneur, Weightlifter, Writer

I have removed all push notifications and most social media apps from my phone. I generally don’t watch mainstream news.

I usually schedule any calls between 1-4:00pm during the day, so I don’t break my creative flow in the morning. Whenever I am writing, I leave my phone in another room.

Cat Noone · Web Designer, Entrepreneur

When I’m laying in bed and Dex is occupying himself with toys.

I check my email and social media notifications, but don’t really like to browse through them to see “What’s happening” until later when I’m on my computer. My idea behind it is, I haven’t even got myself together yet to start the day, I don’t want to nor should care about anybody else’s updates until I do laughs.

While having breakfast I’ll sometimes catch up on the actual news (usually CNN).

Provi Hernandez · Early Riser, College Student

The first thing I do in the morning is look at my phone because it’s also my alarm. I actually really hate this, and I’m hoping to just go back to using a regular alarm clock. I like to keep my technologies separate, but I really like the alarm ringtones on my phone.

Anna Lysakowska · Long-Term Traveler, Blogger

Pretty much when I’m still half asleep in bed. I’m working on the Canadian market, and most of my blog audience comes from North America, so the majority of emails I receive overnight.

Gabriel DiMartino · Recording Engineer, Classical Trumpet Teacher

I use my phone for email, so I guess right away. I steer clear of social media or other things, though. I really don’t want to be bothered by anything until after breakfast. I usually get my coffee-roasting list via text around 8:30am, and I reply to that if need be.

Gray Miller · Grandparent, Writer, Speaker

Much like the email, I try to leave Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr alone until I am intentionally enjoying it.

However, I don’t always manage that discipline. If it’s a lazy morning with my partner, she and I will cuddle and check our phones while sharing funny GIFs and such. It’s a different kind of morning routine.

Marjolein Verbeek · Project Manager, Business IT and Management Student

I turn off my phone at night and turn it on when I want to listen to an audiobook. I then reply to any messages my boyfriend or friends have sent, and put my phone in my pocket.

I try to refrain from checking Facebook, which is a lot easier since I turned off notifications. Usually it turns out I haven’t missed anything on there anyway.

Marco Sousa · Mobile-Apps focused UI and UX Designer

It’s the first thing I do, usually even before I leave the bed. Whether it’s Twitter, emails, or any Facebook nonsense, I usually check everything for about five minutes or so until I convince myself to get up.

Heidi Sistare · Writer, Community Builder

I’m not that great with the phone. I usually put my phone on airplane mode when I sleep because I think it protects me from the… whatever it is that a phone might be emitting that’s bad for us. I’ll often forget to take it off airplane mode until I leave the house in the morning.

Sam O’Neill · Student, Part-Time Lifeguard

It used to be the first thing I did when I awoke, but now I focus on actually getting up.

Occasionally I’ll have a quick browse through Twitter and Instagram if I have a spare minute or two before I leave, but anything that actually requires a response from me, be it an email or a text, can wait until I’m more awake.

Candace Bryan · Editor,

Before I stopped using Twitter, I would check it first thing, while still in bed. Awful stuff. But I’ve deleted the app, so I’m safe.

Jered Benoit · Parent, Marathoner, CrossFit Coach

I’ll admit I’m guilty of checking my phone first thing. As the alarm goes off so early it really helps me wake up.

In a former life I was a systems administrator (still am in some ways), so I usually check out of fear that something has broken, which it usually hasn’t. Then I catch up on Twitter and before rolling out of bed to get to the gym.

Richard Wotton · Newly Qualified Media Studies Teacher

While I am great at checking email; texts and social media have to wait till I can process the less crucial information.

It sounds awful; but I really don’t care what time my twenty one year old friend got home last night after a night drinking, or that another friend hasn’t slept because their young child wouldn’t stop crying all night. That stuff can be left until I am ready to be a decent human being later in the day.

Sahil Parikh · Parent, Web Entrepreneur, Author

When I switch off my alarm and go to the home screen, I’ll see if I have any missed calls and messages.

I never, ever check social media in the morning, but I do consume a bit of news on my iPad. I prefer not to read stuff on my phone in the mornings.

Caroline O’Shea · Flute Player, Vocalist in Traditional Irish Band

I recently switched from a flip phone (I know!!) to an iPhone, and I now check it first thing to see what the day has in store for me. That said, I don’t reply to anything until I’ve properly woken up. That could be disastrous.

I’ll check Facebook to see what happened overnight, that’s a habit I should change. Most of my news comes from NPR and a local radio station.

Alicia Sully · Cinematographer, Documentary Photographer, Compact Editor

It’s the first thing I do after turning off the alarm. I check email, if there are many I’ll skim them. If anything looks urgent I will reply right away. I might also say good morning to my colleagues on WhatsApp or see if anything happened while I was sleeping (we’re operating on multiple timezones).

I also have the habit of listening to a five minute news podcast as I get ready.

Emmanuelle Lambert · Yoga Teacher, Mentor

I have taken social media and email off my phone, and I only turn my phone on after my morning meditation. I never leave it by my bed, I have a landline my family will use should anything happen, and my cell is for work. And I don’t work when I sleep, so…

Emma Milligen · Animator, Art Geek, Vegan

Well it is my alarm, so I suppose it’s the first thing I see. That… is sad. Other than that, I get ‘push notifications’ from apps like Facebook and Gmail, so I see that. I don’t bother checking too far in to it though until I’m at work.

María Ortega García · Spanish Tutor, Frequent Traveler

The guilt consumes me, but I do I check my phone even before I am completely awake.

I have a look at the Facebook and Twitter notifications and updates with one eye, while I am still sleeping with the other. Little by little, notification after notification, update after update, and twit after twit, I eventually wake up fully and leave the bed and the phone on the bedside table.

Julian Summerhayes · Parent, Speaker, Former Lawyer

As to my productivity generally in the morning, I used to spend a lot of time twiddling with various social media bells and whistles, but nowadays I have radically cut back the amount of time I spend messing about.

Lauren McCabe · Writer, Mermaid

Sometimes I scan my social networks looking for updates to the blogs that I most want to hear from, but usually I don’t look at my phone beyond checking the time. I enjoy staying offline as long as possible before the day begins when I won’t, for a single moment, disconnect.

Paul Farmiga · Marketer, CrossFit Enthusiast

I might not check my voicemail for days. The way technology has progressed, odds are good that someone in dire straights that needs to reach me probably isn’t standing by a payphone, hoping I pick up.

Social media is checked before email, which is after breakfast, CrossFit, shower, and coffee. News, as our grandparents used to call it, is checked via social media or email alerts.

Richard Boehmcke · Writer, Stage Director

I check it all first thing. Why not? There could be something good to know. Would I rather not? Of course. But like I said I don’t have that luxury yet so I’m going to hustle and do as much as I can in the meanwhile.

Matt Cheuvront · Marathon Runner, Entrepreneur, Writer

Too soon. I’ve gotten BETTER about not keeping my phone near me when I sleep, but I need to go ahead and commit to keeping it in another room.

Far too often I wake up in the middle of the night, check email/facebook/twitter, get worked up about something, and can’t fall back asleep. That being said, I grab my phone to check emails pretty soon after hopping out of bed.

Paul Jarvis · Website Designer, Author

I check twitter right after email, but no one calls me (ever) and I don’t use other social media too often. News, if it’s pressing, I’ll read about on twitter.

Robyn Devine · Founder of Nebraska Hats for Hope

I try to wait to check my phone until after the boys have left for school/work. It keeps me focused on my son, grounded in the moments I have with him.

Once they’re gone however, I turn on the computer and get myself caught up on news/media for the morning, as well as check to see if I’m sharing a new hat that day.

Patrick Kontschak · Developer, Bacon Addict

Almost immediately. One of the first movements I do is grabbing my MacBook. I’m an internet addict, but really I just can’t stand the red notification badges on my dock. I could turn them off, but that would mean I forget about my emails, Twitter and my RSS feeds.

Whenever I find an interesting article which takes a little more time to read I usually send it to my Kindle and postpone reading it until I’m on my way to work.

Theodora Sutcliffe · Parent, Nomad, Freelance Writer

Rarely. We don’t have a smartphone, because I value time offline, so Skype is how I talk to most friends and family. That said, my Skype number routes through to my local mobile (I always try and have a local phone), so I do look at my phone once I’ve switched off the alarm.

Sarah Athanas · Marketing Creative, Documentary Filmmaker

I group most of this “intake” stuff along with email, so I try to wait until after the first task unless there is something urgent I need to attend to. I do like to listen to NPR while I’m in the kitchen making breakfast. I live outside of my home country and I don’t own a TV, so I try to get at least a tiny bit of news into the day!

Amit Sonawane · Reader, Writer, Devout Tea Drinker

I was hoping you wouldn’t ask this. I am trying to quit checking my phone first thing in the morning. Usually, I grab my phone as soon as I wake up since it’s right next to me. However, I do not open any social-networks unless I see a notification on my iPhone that I think is too important or interesting to ignore.

At this moment, I have disabled all notifications on my iPhone and iPad besides: Facebook inbox messages, Whatsapp, Twitter DMs, and the Reminders app. Also, my phone is always on silent (not even vibrate-mode). I only turn on the ringer if I am expecting an important call.

I do check my Feedly reader to see if any interesting posts are waiting for me. I am only subscribed to eight RSS feeds. For all the other blogs and sites – if it is important to me then I am sure I will check them periodically. This saves me from information porn. I haven’t been on a news-site (e.g CNN, BBC) in over two years and counting.

Kashyapi · Meditation and Zen Teacher

I’m not into the phone at all. I don’t make or take phone calls or messages, except in exceptional cases.

I use my iPhone as a pocket computer. I check social media in the morning, usually before breakfast. It depends what I’m up to. Facebook and Twitter. Occasionally Google+, but it’s very quiet there. I’m currently considering (again) dropping social media. But I get work via social media, so it’s hard to rail against something that works. Facebook is mostly with friends I know in person. Twitter is mostly online contacts and friends.

Andrew · Early Riser, Australian Francophile

Sadly with my phone being my alarm clock, it gets checked first thing in the morning. I’m trying to scale back on connectivity and phone usage so I can see an alarm clock replacing the iPhone.