I Decided to Turn off My Phone for a Week and This Is What Happened
These days, it seems that everyone constantly has their eyes glued to their cell phone. One day, I realized I was spending more time paying attention to my phone than to the people I was actually sitting next to. Most people don’t realize how unhealthy this habit can be. It becomes an addiction. You’re constantly comparing yourself to the people you see on your feed, you’re always refreshing to make sure you didn’t miss anything, and everything becomes about getting likes. No wonder excessive use of technology has been scientifically proven to increase anxiety and stress levels.
So, I was at a point in my summer vacation where I was solely with my family, and anyone else that truly needed to contact me knew how to find me. I turned my cell phone off, stuck it in my purse for an entire week, and this is what happened.
1. I almost caved in several times
I can’t lie, I picked up my phone multiple times and almost pushed the power button. I’ll just check it for five minutes and then turn it off again. Thankfully, I was able to stick with my commitment, and I didn’t turn my phone back on until the week was over.
2. I realized how practical my phone actually is
Sure, cell phones are mainly used to reach your contacts. However, I didn’t realize how frequently I used my phone for other purposes. For example, I use my iPhone as a GPS, a flashlight, calculator, camera, and even an alarm clock. This was very inconvenient at times.
3. I had a serious case of FOMO
Fear of missing out is a real thing. “What are my friends doing tonight? I mean, I know I’m hours away and couldn’t go anyways, but what are they up to?”
The reality is, most things look much more fun online than they actually are in real life. So don’t worry, you’re probably not missing out on anything life-changing.
4. I spent so much quality time with my family
My mom loved this “phone experiment.” She appreciated having no cell phones at the dinner table, and having my complete attention. It was nice to not be distracted or constantly feeling your cell phone vibrating.
5. I started to forget about it after a while
The first few days I was constantly thinking about my phone’s absence. After that, I completely stopped missing it. It was actually freeing!
6. I realized I could survive without a cell phone
Was not having a phone inconvenient? Absolutely. But could I do it again? Absolutely. A cell phone isn’t a necessity. Social media is not a requirement for life. The sun will still rise tomorrow if you don’t check your Facebook or Instagram.
No matter what you have going on in your life, try to take some time away from your phone. I can promise you that you will learn something about yourself. (You should always carry it around with you though in case of an emergency, though.) Also, make sure to let your friends and family know you may be MIA for a bit, so they don’t worry about you!