How to Get Your Husband Off the Phone – Without Nagging!

Need to figure out how to get your husband off the phone…without nagging? We’ve got a little trick that will get your partner back on board (without turning you into a nag in the process!)

These days, it seems screen time is an issue for everyone. From us, to our kids, to our partners, everyone could probably afford to cut back a little.

As a Mom, I know how infuriating it can be to unload the dishwasher or handle the kids alone while your partner is zoned out on the phone.

But, as I’m sure you know, nagging doesn’t work well. Luckily, we found something that DOES!

Next time your husband puts his feet up and stares at his phone, try this little trick!

It's hard to get the Daddy's to focus sometimes, so here are some helpful tips to get him of his phone - without nagging! #screenfree #newyearsresolutions #marriedlife #phoneaddiction #howtogetoffthephone #howtostoptexting

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Step 1: Get His Game Plan

First, ask VERY casually “Whatcha doin’?”

If this sounds at all like you’re nagging, it will never work. You need to be happy and 100% on board. When he mumbles, “Just playing games/checking Twitter/browsing on” (my husband’s personal favorite) try your absolute hardest to smile and suggest, “You’ve worked hard, honey. You deserve a few minutes to relax.”

husband looking at his phone

If this will make your partner suspicious, tell him you read on a blog about how Mom’s need to support their husband having a little relaxation time after work. (You’re not even lying!)

If necessary, repeat Step 1 a couple days before adding Step 2.

Step 2: Join the Fun

Once your husband buys into the fact that you think he deserves to relax, you’re ready for Step 2.

After you get his plan to relax, announce, “You know what? That sounds nice. I think I’m going to join you. We both deserve to relax for 15 minutes!”

couple looking at phone together

Again, it is imperative that this sounds genuine. You really need to sell the relaxing. You need to kick your feet the kids watch TV or play. Let the dishes sit. Let it all go for 15 minutes.

I know this goes a hundred percent against what we’re used to, but it’s absolutely critical.

Step 3: Set a Timer

This is where the training really begins. As you grab your phone or book or bullet journal or craft you’re working on or whatever, set a timer. You can use the timer on your microwave or oven pretty easily.

couple relaxing together

I prefer something more local to wherever we’re relaxing. An old school cooking timer like this is super cheap and easy. Personally, I like to announce, “Alexa, set a timer for 15 minutes!” This transfers bad guy status from YOU to Alexa. Because it’s not you that’s going to end the fun. It’s Alexa.

Related Post: 13 Things You Had No Idea Your Amazon Echo Could Do

Step 4: Enjoy Yourself!

Yes, you actually get to relax for 15 minutes. Because the truth is, your partner probably does deserve to relax for a few minutes. And you DEFINITELY do.

The house isn’t going to burn down if you sit for 15 minutes. The kids aren’t going to turn into zombies if they watch TV for 15 minutes. And those dishes? They’ll still be there waiting for you.

Sometimes we all need a few minutes to reset before facing bedtime/laundry/reality. Enjoy it.

Step 5: Face Reality – TOGETHER

The 15 minutes will go by quickly. For you, and for your partner. So when Alexa, that cold-hearted robot, announces that time is up, you can be bummed.

Drop a heavy sigh, lean over, pat your partner on the leg and say, “Ugh, back to reality. I really enjoyed taking this little break with you. Let’s do this again when you get home tomorrow.” Give him a kiss and stand there waiting for him to get up with you.

couple doing dishes together

Because you’re getting up as a TEAM.

You’re facing reality TOGETHER.

And you’re making a new habit. You can relax together…and then get back at it and tackle your real life as partners.


It is okay for your husband to be on his phone for a while, we promise. And you deserve to take a break too! But we bet that this little trick will help get your husband off his phone, and back on board, without making you the bad guy.

Did you try it? We’d love to hear if it worked for you in the comments!

For more awesome tips about married life, check out these posts!

1 thought on “How to Get Your Husband Off the Phone – Without Nagging!”

  1. Love the tip! Thanks for the suggestion on the timer, too! I’ve been looking for a timer for the kids for a while, but many designed for kids are $35+!?! Right now, they just use the kitchen timer on the stove and because it is in the next room, they can’t glance to see when time is almost up. Plus, my youngest needs the stool to set it and then my 1 year old tries to climb up. That $10 timer seems perfect, especially with the magnet & stand, so the timer can be where they are.

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