I Didn't Use My Phone For 3 Days And This Is What I Realized

I Didn't Use My Phone For 3 Days And This Is What I Realized

Without having a phone, I realized a lot about when I did have a phone.
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This weekend, my phone, unfortunately, decided to take a spill onto the sidewalk and shattered into a million pieces, leaving the entire phone completely useless. With being at school, I was not able to get it fixed until Monday night — leaving me phone-less for nearly three days. Now, this is not a long time, however, it gave me a lot of time to think. I was completely away from having technology everywhere I go within the click of a button. Overall, I had come to a sad realization that I think a lot of millennials could agree on, that we rely on technology and social media way too much in our everyday lives.

I realized I don't need my phone to talk to my friends

My initial reaction to my phone breaking was, "Shoot, how will I communicate with my friends," this, however, was not a huge issue. So I couldn't Snapchat or text for three days, but I realized how sad it was that I thought I needed a phone to talk to my friends. This is in no way an issue anyone should have just because they don't have a phone or aren't on social media.

I realized phones are distractions from what is in front of me

I actually valued the time I had with my friends more, when I was hanging out with them without a phone. I was able to focus directly on the people, activities and conversations that were right in front of me with no distractions of messages and notifications. This was a different experience, something I'm not used to, which is actually sad. Every time I am with my friends, everyone still feels the need to be checking in on social media and see what everyone else that they know is up to on Instagram and Snapchat instead of focusing what we are doing. During this short period of time not having a phone I almost became annoyed with my friends that did because it was like there was something stuck in between and holding back us from being just us and hanging out, which was their phones.

I used my phone as a way to avoid people and situations in public

I then started to realize how much I relied on my phone as almost a "tool" of comfort. I realized how many situations there were in the day that gave me an excuse to be in my phone just so I didn't feel awkward. For example, While riding in the elevator, waiting in lines while getting food, walking to class, waiting for a professor to start a class, and so much more. I realize I use my phone even when I don't want or need to, just because it's "the thing to do" because everyone else is doing it, and if I don’t have my head down looking at the same social media posts I've seen five times within the past hour I will be looked at as weird. I realized my generation struggles to find peace in eye contact and speaking face to face, so we use our devices to hide it.

Without my phone, I feel something is missing

Another thing I felt without my phone was almost like a sense of something missing or I was forgetting something when I was out in public. I recently read an article regarding technology and connections and a quote that stuck out to me was "The next time you leave your phone at home, think about that being the reason for feeling like a piece of you is missing." This quote stuck out to me so much and really made me think about it. I believe people who are active on social media leave a part of themselves on technological devices and on social media, then when they're not on them they feel a longing for them and are almost in a way addicted to their lives on their technology or social media. But what if what everyone is really missing out on is the world in front of them offline and they just didn't know it?

Being the one without a phone left me feeling like I was living in a different world than those that did have phones.

Without having a phone, I realized a lot about when I did have a phone. It was a weird feeling, I almost felt left out from everyone else, or like I was missing something, not following everyone else and doing the "Norm." I definitely realized that this world is very technologically involved and with that comes many flaws, or at least in my eyes. I believe technology has created a bubble around people and it reels them into almost a whole new world, and once that technology is taken away you, or at least I was living in a different world.

Cover Image Credit: Sierra Gardner

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Social Media Is Causing Problems With Our Social Skills

When people care more about followers than about each other, something is wrong…
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Do you care whatever you do?
Do you care wherever you go?
Do you care whomever you meet?

Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat. Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr. There are countless apps, sites, and programs which let you enter the realm of social media. And I know, social media is important, I get it.

Without social media, this article wouldn’t find its readers. Without social media, my family on the other side of the globe wouldn’t be able to follow my stories on my blog. Without social media, people couldn’t get in touch with each other so fast and easy. I’m not denying any of it. But tell me, does social media make us more social? How is it possible that we live in a lonely world although we have the Internet to connect us with the whole world?

Pardon me if I sound harsh, but don’t you have the impression that in today’s society people care more about followers than about people?

Don’t you, too, realise that young adults care more about increasing their likes on Instagram than about pushing themselves to better results in school and university? Don’t you think that we constantly care more about our phones in the hands than about the guy we’re sitting next to in class, or the friend with whom we travel, or the family with whom we dine?

Maybe you think I’m exaggerating, but I have the impression that people do not care. We do not care. I do not care enough. I don’t care enough about what I say without thinking. About whom I hurt. About how to make someone else’s life a little easier. Sometimes I do not even care enough about myself.

But I should care. You should care. We should care.

About people. About words. About history. You should care about that kid you sit next to in French class. And about your Mum who worries about you. And about your teachers who are trying their best to provide you with education. We should care about all the things that seem tiring and not fun. About our responsibility as citizens, partners, children. About our world and about ourselves. For we are as much part of this society as everyone else is.

Living in a society means to care for each other, rely on each other, trust each other. It’s impossible to create those feelings and foster them without undivided attention to your neighbour and real-life socialising.

Don’t throw your phone away. Don’t delete your Facebook account. (You wouldn’t do it anyways, would you? :D) But switch them off from time to time. You care for the world surrounding you when you look up from your screen while traveling. You care for your friends and family when you put your phone away while eating in a restaurant. And finally, you care about your society when you learn how to use your device to make a difference in the world. It's not about the followers you earn. Let it be about the content you put out there and about the one you take in. Care!

Cover Image Credit: rawpixel.com

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If You Answer Yes To Any Of These 10 Questions, You Might Need To Breakup With Social Media

Don't let social media make decisions for you.
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I'M BREAKING UP WITH SOCIAL MEDIA!

Look, I know I sound crazy, but just bear with me on this one. Think about it: how many times are you hanging out with a friend, and both of you are just sitting on your phones? Maybe you're even sitting right next to each other and just texting them instead of verbally communicating (call me crazy, but I feel like humans have vocal chords for a reason).

And maybe even worse: you guys can't have a real conversation in person because who you are online is different than who you are offline. You know, the absolute worst part is that this kind of scenario is just the tip of an iceberg larger than Mt. Everest. There's also cyberbullying, an increase in self-esteem issues, and even more (maybe that we don't even realize yet).

Giving up social media for lent really opened my eyes to the issues with social media and the burdens it places on both society's shoulders and an individual's shoulders.

Honestly, I felt so much happier with myself when giving it up that when I could finally use it again, I didn't really want to use it. In fact, using it kind of stresses me out now, so I've decided to break up with social media for good.

Well, kind of. I'm keeping Facebook so my family, especially those in England, don't think I'm dead or missing. I'm basically remodeling my personal twitter account so I'm just following poetry and topics I actually care about (and memes but I like to keep that part on the down low).

As for Instagram, I'm going to delete my personal and keep my photography account. Lastly, I'm just going to use Snapchat for communication and keeping up with my friend's lives. Basically, anything that makes me unrealistically self-conscious or more selfish, I'm getting rid of or modifying it to not be that way.


If your relationship with social media is at a crossroads, ask yourself these 10 questions:

1. Do you tweet more to your drafts than to your actual feed?

2. Do you constantly check Instagram to see how many likes (or comments) your selfie got? And/or do you check Snapchat to see how many views (or replies) your selfie got on your story?

3. If you didn't get enough likes, comments, replies, views, etc., do you delete the selfie?

4. Does scrolling through your feed make you feel self-conscious about characteristics of yourself that you normally would not be self-conscious about, or even self-conscious about characteristics you love about yourself?

5. Do you find yourself scrolling through social media while hanging out with a friend rather than talking to them in person?

6. Do you get in fights with friends, family, or significant others when one of you misinterprets something that someone said on social media?

7. Do you find yourself acting completely different on social media than you would normally in person?

8. Are you getting fewer things done (homework, projects, etc.) because of spending time on social media?

9. Is it hard for you to talk about uncomfortable, controversial, and/or significant topics in person?

10. Do you struggle to connect and converse with people in person?


If you answered yes to 5 or more of these questions, or honestly even any of these questions, I would strongly suggest taking a hard look at your social media: who you follow, what you post, how you act, etc.

You don't need to cut social media cold-turkey if you don't want to, but I think you'll find that your life is much simpler without the stresses and burdens it places onto your shoulders. Trust me, the process isn't easy, but it is liberating in every way imaginable.


Don't let social media wear the pants in your relationship, people.
Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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