The Time Capsule ​​
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The Time Capsule ​​

A story about how my iPhone 7 mysteriously worked 6 years later and the grip the powerful tools can have on us.


This is a response to "Hacking Your Way to a Great Work-Life Balance."

Work life balance really is important. To be able to detach from the stress of the work day and find ways to relieve that stress are key factors that play a role in managing your mental health. One of the key stressors of our modern world is in fact our phones. They hold so much power over us and can charge our emotions more than we think. We place our whole lives in the palm of our hands and lets our phones dictate so much of how we feel day to day.

To demonstrate how phones are so powerful in our lives I want to tell a personal story that happened to me recently.

I have been on the ultimate quest right now to detox my space and organize things better. I needed bins to store things so I thought I would bounce over to my parents house and see if they had anything I could use because who wants to pay for things right?

Amidst scavenging my closet for bins to use, I came across my old iPhone 7 with its bright pink phone case resting on a shelf. The thing had been dead for years and had not seen the light of day since 2017. We are now in 2023, that was 6 years ago. 6 years ago! I had come across another bin that had an old charger and thought why not plug the sucker in even though I know it probably won't charge. When I plugged it in, the battery showed what it looked like to be charging. I thought, there is no possible way this thing is going to ever turn on. I carried on with my search for bins and returned to my phone a couple minutes later.

When I clicked the home button, my lock screen brightly lit up and up popped a picture of my ex and I on vacation. I was in complete shock. I couldn't believe the phone was even working. For the next 10 minutes I was overwhelmed by the amount of content that I saw because I had never backed up my phone and could not believe it had turned on. Everything was frozen in time. Messages between friends I no longer talked to, my old roommate group message, funny gifs between my ex and I, it was all there. I clicked my photo album and saw pictures I hadn't seen in years.

One could say I started to spiral and all my emotions went awry. In 2017, I was a junior at The University of Tennessee after transferring from a smaller, liberal arts college and had embarked on a new journey. All I could think of while staring down at my phone was how much had happened between then and now. A lot of good had happened in the space between but also a lot of hardship. I wondered why all of a sudden my phone would start now when it had not started for years.

I took my phone off the charger and continued to look through all that I could in what felt like a time capsule of my life. My battery started to drain and when I tried plugging the charger back in, the phone would now not hold the charge.

Then just like that, my phone snapped off and everything was lost in the black. I glanced up and looked in the mirror thinking about what all had just happened.

The summary of this story is simple. Phones have a powerful grip over our emotions and can transport us into another world. Even though they are great for staying in touch with people, showing us directions, playing music and more, they still have the power to rule over our lives. Taking the time away from your mobile device in this modern world is more important now than ever. So next time you have a break after work and want to pass the time on your phone, think about what you can do instead to have a tech detox.

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