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Cell Phone Use and Staying Phenomenally Independent

Posted by Sarah V. Jackson on

Recently I have been feeling that I am losing touch with the human world (civilization) and as a result decided to use my Smartphone less and less. Since the activation of my Android, two years ago, I feel as though I have become a droid myself, from another planet. I have been using the palm-sized device everywhere I go, more often each day, even when I tell myself not to. The phone is primarily used for convenience; it is an alarm clock, camera, timer, voice and video recorder all-in-one. I am able to do online-banking and e-mail in my driveway, at the grocery store, even while driving (not that one should). I can instantly communicate with anyone, so long as there is service. Who needs anything else? The truth is I have become addictive to the four-cornered LCD screen that fits in the palm of my hand.

However, I am not as zoned in as I think I am. A YouTube video shows individuals who are so distracted by their phone, they are literally walking into traffic, telephone poles, signs, each other, not to mention the many who text and drive. "I'm not this bad," I tell myself. Well, that's what everyone says until something happens. Clearly, I am not the only one who is reliant on their phone. However, I do get tired of depending on it so much.

To take the focus off my phone (because having one is not of extreme importance to me) I have decided to make a few adjustments to my lifestyle. In order to NOT be so reliant on the four-cornered figure, I have purchased a Mead, large print, Monthly Planner to help me organize my daily activities. "How will I ever be reminded of such events without an alarm?" I thought. While the process of writing (as opposed to typing or texting) is becoming a thing of the past, the task of doing so is a mental reminder. The planner remains open, face-up, and on the table at all times.

On the other hand the Smartphone Calendar requires me to perform one more step, to open it up to write and review the daily activities I need to remember, both of which I often forget to do.

As my life becomes increasingly more busy with my two growing girls, fiancé, puppy and cat, so too is the use of the calendar. Where I once was filling the Smartphone Calendar with few events, I have now maxed out its allotted space. It appears I'll have to upgrade my plan and storage device, which I am not happy about. The more stuff I have means more money out of my pocket not to mention more things to remember.

Added to the constant stress of owning a Smartphone, is the worry of NOT having one at all times. Because the phone is so small, I'm constantly putting it down. The phone is also too big to fit comfortably in a pant pocket; it's no wonder that I'm always putting it down somewhere. Whether it’s too small or too big, I am always asking "Where's my phone?" because I have a hard time remembering where I placed it in the first place. I'm tired of asking, looking and, all-too commonly these days, losing it.

Lastly, relying on a Smartphone makes one all too comfortable about being uncomfortable. Eating alone in a restaurant, waiting alone while your vehicle is being serviced, or being alone in the bus station, airport or parking lot; many people find it hard to accept the fact of lonesomeness, despite knowing that it’s all being a fact of life.

Opening a book, a newspaper or just being aware of one's surroundings is an easy antidote to experiencing the withdrawal feelings of being without the four-cornered, rectangular communication device. Perhaps I am uncomfortable using my Smartphone a lot, but as much as I don't want to accept it, we are living in a technologically driven world. Maybe I should be more accepting and comfortable of that fact of life. But it is comforting to know that there are alternatives to the technology which we should remember to use now and then.

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