|Today I will have a phone again and I have mixed feelings about it.
On one hand I’ll be very excited to have it back but on the other hand, I’ve learned so many lessons from going phone free for the past month. Although this was not a choice I made, (lost it at a bar), it was a challenge that I took on with the utmost positivity. I SURVIVED an entire month without my phone! Hopefully, this will make you think a bit about doing a phone free challenge yourself!
Here are 5 things I learned from my phone free month:
It was so freeing not having the responsibility to respond to things immediately. Emails, texts, Facebook comments, Instagram messages, snapchats, the list goes on! I was living like I had 27 tabs open in my brain (that is true on my laptop but that’s another story haha). I hadn’t realized it until all of the sudden I only had one tab open, the present moment. What a freeing feeling!
NO ALARM CLOCK
This was the weird part… I had to rely on my biological clock to wake up at the right time each day. Thank goodness I don’t have an office job to be at. I skipped many naps that I wanted to take because I was nervous about not waking up on time! I have finally gotten good at waking up on time naturally, but I’ll be happy to have my alarm clock back.
Those who know me well, know that my life runs on the reminder app in my iPhone. If I need to do something in 10 minutes, I set a reminder with an alarm that goes off. This can be something important like a meeting, to something simple like taking a shower to leave the house on time. It sounds silly, but it’s how I run my life. I know my strengths and fully admit that memory is not one of them. So this is how I keep my life together. Not having the reminder app was probably the most challenging part of this whole month. I NEED it back.
Oddly enough, I met 2 people who did not have/use phones right when I lost mine. One was a girl I befriended really quickly who just did not use a phone most of the time and the other was a boy I fell madly in love with (for a week). This sounds funny, but I don’t remember the last guy I dated when phones were not a part of the dating process. It must have been something like 6th grade! Long story short, we met, fell hard for each other, and had the time of our lives during that very short week. We had deep conversations, actual quality time, and our dates were uninterrupted by technology. Those were the most enjoyable dates I’ve EVER been on. I don’t know if I’ll ever get to experience this again.
I know it’s cliche but I really enjoyed moments for what they were worth, not for what I could post on Instagram stories. This month happened to be my biggest travel month of 2017. Coincidence? I think not! From Spain, to Morocco, to Miami… all of the moments live in my mind, not in the digital space. I was forced to look around, take it all in, save things in my memory folder (however small that is in my brain), and point out little details that I wouldn’t have noticed if I was busy capturing it all on my phone. At meals, I wasn’t mad at anyone for using their phone as soon as they sat down. I simply enjoyed the time to think to myself (I really love silence). Walking around the little streets of Morocco, I was able to see so many hidden gems that I’m pretty sure other people missed. I’m very certain that I enjoyed my travels 10x more without my phone.
So, my question is… could you do it? Maybe not for a month, but a week, or even a day?
Based on the response so far, we may do a 48 hour phone free challenge in the month of May. Comment below if you’re up for it.