Today, it’s all about speed, accessibility, networking. How could that be possible without the Internet, mobile phones and social networking? Over and over again, I have noticed in a negative manner how much I’m actually used to my phone as it replaces so many everyday items, like a watch, a camera, an alarm clock, a notepad. It has been so long I called someone on landline.
How much time I actually spend on my mobile phone to text people I would never like to meet in reality. As my phone suddenly changes my feelings to being angry or sad, because certain persons won’t text back for hours and I look every two minutes on the screen or won’t give my phone out of my hands. How much time I really waste on WhatsApp, Instagram and Facebook every day that I could use to take care of myself, my family, my friends.
I often just turn off my phone for a few hours, or do not carry it along on a trip, but during that time I have to be really busy to not thinking about my phone and supposedly important news.
Last week I was in Heidelberg for a holiday, and on Sunday before departure I had the crazy idea of leaving my phone at home and only taking my camera, a self-test so to say how I would endure a long time without my smartphone. It was very easy at first, like one week without my phone should not be that big challenge I wouldn’t manage.
On the road, I did not hear music this time but simply looked out of the window for three hours. And also on the entire trip, I noticed that you experience everything so much more intensely without a mobile phone, you glance more, you will discover more, and especially recognize these many, many people having their smartphones in their hand or on their ear always and everywhere. Actually a terrible thought that I otherwise belong to them.
At first it was a very strange feeling not checking my phone in the evening before going to sleep, but reading a book or taking a long bath instead. Quality time, which made me relax and unwind much more than I could have while texting under pressure. I didn’t have to justify for doing just nothing, because nobody could reach me anyways. In one week, I surprisingly improved my photography skills. Previously I always only took pictures with the phone, I never really kept busy with my actually really good camera.
But when the photos were getting better, I already felt the desire to share them on Instagram. Each passing day I noticed how often my thoughts centered aroung my phone, I even was so bored one night that I started to eat, as a replacement for my cell phone, which otherwise would have solved the boredom. On the way home, I wasn’t able to think of something else than turning on my phone soon.
At home I then was busy on the phone for two struck hours, although being honest, nothing really important had happened in that week, nobody had really missed me not being reachable. Sad, isn’t it? I’ve learned a lot about myself, how hard it is to get rid of such a bad habit, an addiction, but I also swore to spend more time without my phone. And I think that wouldn’t hurt some others, too!