New Year's Day, after nothing of any particular significance, my phone decided that it no longer wished to work. By events of "significance", I mean that it wasn't dropped, nothing was spilled on it and no traumatic event occurred to it that would lead you to expect it had been damaged. I simply woke up, it worked fine for a few hours and then some fun white and gray lines decided to appear on it and the touch screen no longer worked. I figured this just meant a quick trip to the Apple Store that day and I would be on my way. However, with it being just after the holidays, the next available appointment was a week away, so I (not by choice) went phone-less for the week. Here's what happened:
I was way more productive.
I've had a list of chores sitting on the white board in my room since I came home from school three weeks ago that I just never got around to. Without the immediate distraction of my phone I got about half of them done all in a row in one afternoon. I never realized how much time I wasted just scrolling through Instagram and Twitter and sending Snapchats until the option wasn't readily available to me. Though I still had access to most things through my computer, I used it much less than my ever-present phone and more of the time in my day was devoted to cleaning, organizing and reading. Though it sounds pretty boring it's much more satisfying to actually have accomplished something in the hour or two you have in your day rather than to have simply kept yourself up to date on the latest Buzzfeed articles.
I found extra time in my day.
I wasn't at the constant beck and call of my phone all day, which means e-mails, texts, GroupMe messages, phone calls and Snapchats among other things all had to wait until I had access to a computer or simply until I had my phone back. When I was out I was out. This meant staying connected to the people I was with and what I was doing wasn't something I had to consciously be aware of, nor was the fact that staring at a screen in the presence of others is rude. Even reading a book, I wasn't tempted to take a break every couple of pages just to check that tantalizing little screen; I read until I wanted to stop and then I did something else.
I went back to some old ways.
My before-bed ritual once again became reading a few chapters in a book rather than scrolling through every platform of social media I have. I started listening to the radio every time I would get in the car rather than plugging in an aux and pulling up Spotify. I woke up, without an alarm, and turned on the TV to watch the news rather than scrolling through a News Feed and finding important news mixed with trivial posts. I started my day as soon as I woke up, rather than scrolling through my phone for fifteen minutes first.
I still stayed connected.
A lot of people think it's near impossible to go without a phone and still stay connected and updated in today's society. Though I didn't have my phone when I was out anywhere, I faired just fine staying in the loop and in-touch with my friends. I used my computer to receive iMessages and check Instagram and GroupMe. So even though I wasn't receiving messages right away, I could still make plans and any seriously important information would still reach me. It was nice to check-in and check-out of social media as I pleased. I didn't have notifications showing up right away in the palm of my hand urging me to check them and respond ASAP.
All of this being said, it was a nice break and something I might do again from time to time by choice, maybe not for a week but a day or two at a time. My phone was repaired yesterday, although it seems that it's still not completely fixed (*cough @Apple do better*) and I'm certainly ready to plug back-in, however maybe not so whole-heartedly this time. When I'm feeling stressed next time I'll remember to "unplug" for the day and pick up a book or get some chores done.