Disclosure: I am a U.S. Cellular Better Moments Brigade Blogger. All opinions are my own.
From February 5-11 Mark Malkoff (comedian and Huffington Post contributor) accepted U.S. Cellular’s Challenge to go without his phone for a week and so I decided to join in on the challenge for part of the week! (You can see the chronicle of his challenge here!) How hard could it be? I went through my entire childhood and teenage years without a cell phone! In fact for the first several years we were married we didn’t have cell phones! At first, I was excited! I was thinking how nice it would be to have a break from technology and unplug for a little bit without my smartphone…..but after the first day those thoughts changed pretty quickly!!
“This is SO awesome! I can read a book, get some laundry and dishes done in the house. I’ll just pop on the computer whenever I get around to it to check my e-mail.” By the time I picked the kids up for the day it was starting to feel a little weird not to have my phone with me and I could feel myself reaching into my pockets grabbing for my cell phone…..but it wasn’t there!
The day started a little more frantically. We woke up late. The kids were running late for school. We jumped in the car to head off but I realized I was going to be late for volunteering for school so I reached for my cell phone to call the school office…..and it wasn’t there! DRATS! Now I was just plain irritated. Who doesn’t carry their cell phone with them?! Now I’m going to look rude showing up so late without notice! Not to mention that I hadn’t even checked my e-mail that morning and as a blogger I get literally hundreds of e-mails a day so I wouldn’t get to them until after lunch……by the time nightfall came I was really feeling out of sorts without my phone. My kids were playing before bedtime so nicely with each other and I went to grab my phone to take a picture of them…..AHHHHH I didn’t have my cell phone with me. This was not going well at all!
I made sure to check my e-mails on my computer before I left for the morning and took care of all of the business that was waiting for me. I had some errands to run for the day and I REALLY needed my phone to check online and compare prices to items I found at the store on clearance. I ended up spending $10 more on something in the store I could have used my phone for and found cheaper online. Irritation really started creeping over me as I began to feel pretty handicapped without my phone! I didn’t realize that having my smartphone with me in the stores has really added up to quite a bit of savings by comparing prices and using mobile coupons! I didn’t have to hassle with as many returns. Not to mention that as I browsed the clearance I couldn’t look online on my cell phone to see reviews for the items that I was looking at – ARGH!
After feeling quite lost at the store without my phone I headed back home again to work online on my computer and realized that I had missed an important sponsored campaign because I didn’t have my phone with my to reply to the e-mail in time! Simply because I went into town for errands – how am I supposed to run a business without a cell phone? DARN IT! THAT’S IT! I was absolutely fed up with this “no phone” challenge thing and I QUIT! I can’t run a business and keep in contact with my husband or my kid’s schools without it – not to mention comparing prices and reviews while I’m out shopping.
After Reuniting with my Smartphone
Well geez 3 days was all I made it! I thought for sure I could stretch a week out of the challenge but it was a LOT harder than I thought! I missed out on pictures of my children that I can’t replace which made me incredibly sad at the time. My kids missed out talking to their grandparents since we don’t have landlines at our house. I missed revenue in my business which just plain made me mad. Not having my phone really threw a kink in my grocery shopping – not only did I spend too much money on something because I couldn’t compare prices but my grocery list is ON my cell phone so I couldn’t remember what I was supposed to buy! I was totally out of touch with the news, with my friends and family, and I felt really disconnected from the business end of my blog! Using your cell phone in moderation is a very good thing in leading a balanced life as is enjoying in-person relationships, but I’ve also come to realize how much I rely and depend on my phone to make life run smoother for me! It really helps to complete the connection to current events, friends and family that don’t live close, and keeping my life organized on a daily basis.
Would YOU be able to go without your cell phone for a whole week? What would you miss the most?