I recently had to live without my phone for one week, and it wasn’t easy at all. My phone crashed, and my lazy self was not even bothered to fix it or get a new one. I wondered how it was going to be like to live without a phone for a whole week, but thank God I survived.
A majority of us have not had to live without their smartphones for a long period of time. Some if we even think we cannot live without our phones. We’ve come to attached to it that we have picked up bad habits thanks to our tech friend. A lot of my friends wondered how I managed to live for a whole week without my phone.
I thought I was living under a rock the first day but after that day I actually enjoyed life without my phone. I learnt how to do new things, new recipes, I even got back to reading and I wrote more. I was aware of what was happening around me, something I really couldn’t have done if I had been buried in my phone. I also was able to notice a fee bad habits my smartphone had made me and a lot of people adopt. Here are a few of the bad habits I’ve noticed that many of you have.
1. You’re a constant flake
People seem to use their phones as a means for making excuses — if you’re running late, you send a text to say so; if you have to cancel, you send an email 5 minutes before. You treat others this way because it’s the way they treat you, even though you hate it when they do.
But without constant access to a phone, you’re instead forced commit to plans and be on time. Your friends that know you don’t have a phone become aware of this, so they also show up on time. This new mutual respect for each others’ time and plans emerges, and those that are incapable of that respect seem unorganised and unreliable. You start to notice which type of person is better to have around.
2. You don’t respect people as much as you should
When you’re tethered to a constant connection, you’re easily taken out of the present and transplanted to future concerns. Out with friends? You get messages that make you think about something else entirely — a completely irrelevant thing from what you’re currently doing. And the people you’re with doing notice, but they probably don’t say anything.
You’re also selective of what and who you respond to because there are some things you’d rather ignore at that moment. So you end up flaking on people that are trying to reach you, too — and they know this because you’ve seen their message.
By not being constantly connected, you give greater respect to those around you and even those that aren’t.
3. You’re a terrible driver
I’ve watched people send texts and scroll through contacts while he tries to get somewhere safely.
No matter what you think, a person looking down at their phone simply cannot be the same quality of driver as they are without looking down at their phone. And if you were just slightly less connected like me, you wouldn’t be tempted to be on your phone in your car at all.
4. You get less done.
You’re always thinking about two things at once. Similar to how you lack respect for the people around you both presently and virtually, you have trouble giving respect to things you’re doing. The tasks you work on or set out to accomplish are always given less than 100 percent of your focus, and the result is they take twice as long to complete or are of lesser than perfect quality.
When you allow yourself to always be connected, you’re reacting to events as they come to your attention. You think you’re getting more done at once, but you’re actually just switching between tasks and to-do list items, without ever spending more time or focus on just one thing.
If you instead devoted your entire focus on just one thing, you’d spend less time on it and it would turn out better — giving yourself more time to respond to your friends or send a Snapchat later on.
5. You use your phone as a social crutch.
You stand in a crowded elevator and swipe between home screens, without having anything new to check. You come up with a reason to text someone while you’re at a party because don’t feel enough of a buzz just yet. You can’t sit and sip a coffee from a park bench without checking Instagram.
I once even saw a woman in her 30s scrolling through Facebook from her bar stool, next to the man who’d brought her there and was ordering her drinks. Something about her inexpressive face lit up by a screen made me very sad.
Sure, a lot of people are uncomfortable in social situations, and maybe looking at your phone to pass the time or avoid a moment of awkwardness is easier for you. But it still isn’t a good habit to get into, no matter who you are.
And if you think you’re being nice by accepting an invitation to just sit on your phone somewhere, you’re wrong. Stay home until you can figure out how to enjoy yourself.