Monday, May 19, 2014

Walk the Walk


In my post "Look Up" from a few weeks ago I mention how important it is that we stop spending so much time staring at our phones and actually LOOK UP at what is around us. As much as I love to talk the talk, now it's time I walked the walk.

This weekend I removed all social media applications from my phone. I also removed a majority of shopping apps (except Amazon, because I'm not stupid), all games and all other 'time wasters'. My phone is now JUST a phone I use to make calls, send/receive text messages, check the occasional email, and shop for baby items on Amazon.

In merely 24 hours without the social icons, I can't believe how much my vision has changed. I already feel clearer-minded. I did constantly reach for my phone the first 12 hours or so, and then it became very natural...and now on day 2 I'm already forgetting to take my phone with me when I move room to room in my house.

I had been spending so much time staring at my screen that I wasn't even participating in meals with my son. I wasn't actively engaged in conversations with my husband. I talked to hundreds of people a day but I didn't really say anything.

It seemed really daunting to start, but now I'm thrilled I did it. I am now considering this a challenge to myself. How long can I last without social media on my phone?

In line at Walgreens to pick up my prescription today I had to just sit there. In my car. Listening to the radio. Didn't have anyone to talk to (thanks Mom for watching Billy on my lunch hour so I could get things done!), didn't have any news feeds to endlessly scroll through. Just me, my car and the radio. It was nice!

I have kept the social apps on my iPad, and I only use them when Billy is sleeping. Because honestly, to Billy the iPad is a magical place where Curious George appears so if I do as much as unlock the screen when he is awake I get mauled.

So much of my day Monday-Friday is spent in front of a computer/iPad screen working* that I am already missing out on that time with my son. I feel so free now that I have disconnected myself from my phone. I can lay on the floor and build blocks with him without looking over and checking my notifications. I can keep my phone on ring because it won't be dinging every 3 seconds with a new comment I NEED TO READ RIGHT NOW.

Now I challenge you to do the same. Are you willing? How long do you think you'll last?

*The ironic part of all of this is that my profession is Social Media Producer. I am literally a full time social media manager and analyst. You'd think I would be sick of it by the end of the day!


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