Day 1 (Saturday):
I have a love/hate relationship with my mobile phone.
I can’t really remember when or why I got my first phone, but for as long as I have owned one, I don’t really find myself depending on it. In fact, I used to think that I can survive a long period of time without a phone. I think this all boils down to how disgruntled I always feel whenever I have to reply people, especially when I am in the middle of something.
I still have that same thought that I can survive without a mobile phone, but over the years, I have also been more aware of how naive that thought is. Simply because as time passes, I have become more and more dependent on it.
I can’t even say it is because of the compulsion to fill pockets of my free time with social media. It is more due to the fact that group discussions have been increasingly shifting to online messaging services such as Facebook or Whatsapp. It is to the point where if I don’t own a mobile phone (with all these messaging services), I become a nuisance to other people.
I have also noticed that the people around me tend to always be using their phones even when they are bored of using their phones. They open their social media to check their latest feed and just keep on scrolling to the point where they are just scrolling for the sake of, hoping and waiting for something to catch their eyes.
There are also people like me who uses their mobile phones to avoid contact with people. I tend to pretend to be busy with my phone when I see an acquaintance from afar who I do not know if I should greet with a wave or a hello.
Day 2 (Sunday):
There were some tough moments, but overall, it has been a pretty great day. I don’t think that Sundays are the best time to conduct this experiment as I don’t really use my phone that often.
On Sundays, I am usually glued to my computer where I have so many more things to occupy my attention with, then my mobile phone which is both restrictive in size and comfort. I very much prefer staring at a bigger screen and the feel of a keyboard, to tapping endlessly on a small screen.
However, I left my house for awhile today to meet a friend for lunch. I didn’t bring my phone with me, and almost forgot about the ez-link card I always keep inside my phone case. It was weird not to have something to scroll through during the time I was alone. I also found myself lost at times because I didn’t have anything on me to indicate what time it was.
I also had a lot of anxiety because I was afraid that my friend might have texted me sudden changes and I wouldn’t know of them because I didn’t have my phone with me. As I am usually early for meet-ups, I used to wander around while waiting for my friends to reach. But today, I dare not do so for the fear that my friend might be unable to find me.
Not having a phone with me also forced me to be very present. Yes, there were moments where I found myself reaching for my phone out of habit. But after a while, I found my attention to be on whatever I am doing. I think this is a really positive change as very often, we are not 100% where we should be due to distractions coming mostly from our social media and the need to be connected. As ironic as it is, the need to be connected online has caused us to be less connected offline.
I went back home after lunch. Continued my usual routine of staring at the computer, and didn’t miss a single thing about my phone. I even felt gratified that now I have an excuse to miss replying people’s text messages because I am doing an assignment for school.