What I Learned From Going Days Without A Phone

Two weeks ago my iphone 6 decided that it would stop responding to touch. Great. Two weeks of turning the phone on and off, and locking and unlocking it in hopes that this time around, it would respond. Now, I was going to eventually take it in to fix the screen, but time was just not on my side. Evidently, I waited too long, because all it took was a moment of clumsiness, a drop of the phone, and it was dead. Well, sort of; the LCD screen was ruined, the phone had a crack, and it is now unresponsive. You can't even see the home screen! So long story short, it has been two days and it's remarkable what things you pick up on simply by not having a phone.

Here's what I learned:

1) Everyone thinks it's impossible to live without a phone: My mom outright told me that she would buy me a cheap flip phone instead of making me "endure" five days of not having a phone. I retaliated with the simple fact that phones aren't a necessity and that people had gone phoneless for years, but she insisted not having a phone was "traumatizing". True story.

2) Your concept of entertainment changes drastically:
I had class on my first day of phone less life. Once in class, I sat down in my seat and looked around. A few people were talking, the rest were on their phone. I instinctively reached for mine and then remembered the circumstances so I got my binder out instead. Unfortunately for me, I didn't bring a book or extra homework so I read through a study guide our teacher had made for us. The study guide is literally made to help you succeed in his class and I had yet to read it because the times I had the opportunity, I chose social media on my phone instead. I began to question how many times I had done this with other subjects and was disappointed to find that I seriously choose to check Instagram instead of reading something helpful.

3) Your thoughts consume you entirely:
I had never noticed how mindless you can become when you are consistently tied up with your phone. You constantly check it, you're constantly talking to someone on it, and your next thought is about finding another chance to use it. You may think this is untrue, but think about it; you leave class and do what? You pull out your phone! We have developed such a dependency on it that we hardly leave ourselves to our thoughts. It is almost as though we have become afraid of facing our minds. Spending all day without my phone made it so that my mind was all I had for entertainment. To be honest it was actually really interesting how imaginative you can be and how much more you can actually focus on a conversation or even on class. In essence I found some clarity in being alone with my thoughts. I found myself immersed with new ideas and musings about life that I would have otherwise never considered.

4) You can enjoy being disconnected:
I would be lying if I said I wasn't wearisome about not having a phone, as it is completely inconvenient. If you want to meet up with someone you tell them in person and hope they keep their word. You can't make plans with people unless you see them in person or you have to go old school and message them on your laptop through Facebook. Also, since my phone is completely unusable, the only people I can call are the one's whose number I've memorized. Point is, I was upset. However, a few hours in and I actually began not having to constantly report where I am and what I'm doing to my mom, or anyone else for that matter. It was nice to not care who posted what on Instagram, or to be worried about my phone ringing in class. I found that in being disconnected I saw more of what was actually happening around me. I enjoyed the details of life, felt the breeze more, paid more attention to detail. All I'm saying is that not having your phone can actually be quite peaceful.

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