The smartphone dilemma. Excessive phone usage is really becoming detrimental to society these days. We’re becoming more and more engrossed with our phones and less engrossed with each other. We feel like we’re going to miss out on a notification or a message so we neglect the experience we’re having in the moment. This leaves us without space to clear our constantly stimulated minds to gather ourselves and truly relax. You might not see the adverse effects of using your phone as it isn’t as obvious as a drug addiction. However it can turn into an addiction none the less and pretty quickly. I’ve read how people that have taken the leap to go without and they never go back.
I have a smartphone dilemma because I totally agree with all these negative effects. I know the great benefits of giving one up and using a much more basic phone. However I also know how useful having one is. I think about how useful it is when I’m lost or a place to store my experiences digitally, what if I lose touch with some people i want to stay in touch with but then wouldn’t the ones that really value me in their lives still try and keep in touch with me. It’s a difficult decision to make.
If you’ve ever thought that ditching your smartphone would be a good idea. I’ve listed five positive and negatives to help you make your own decision.
Freedom – When I’ve been without a phone for long periods of time I feel a lot more free. I have no one to answer to, there’s nothing I need to check. It’s truly liberating.
More Present – Ever felt anxious about the next notification on your phone? Occupying your time anticipating a reaction or message. No smartphone means none of that so you will become more present to the here and now.
More intimate connections – We have this problem these days. More acquaintances and less actual meaningful connections. People are a lot lonelier these days than before. Which is so surprising considering the access we have to all these social networks connecting us with hundreds of people within seconds. Quality not quantity is a huge factor. We need real connections to fill that void for us not likes on our status or the occasional Facebook conversation.
Productivity will sky rocket – Without the constant disruptions oft checking your phone throughout the day you will have more time and be a lot more focused. So a double win in terms of productivity.
Save money – Smartphones are expensive devices. Your going to have to fork out for the handset and then pay a monthly fee to use one.
Emergencies – When your out and your lost. Google maps is always my saviour, I can use my GPS to find my current location and boom it shows me how to get to where i want to get to. I can also use the internet to search for things in case of emergencies like a car breakdown or a how to video on youtube to help me out on the spot.
Missing out – Your going to miss out on the ‘In’ App. A snapchat , game or any of the latest trends that’s going around on.
Less interactions – With no Whatsapp, Twitter or Facebook on your phone your going to connect with less people. This could be a disadvantage if your career or business involved a lot of networking.
Moments – One of the best features of having a smartphone is the ability to take quality pictures and videos of your experiences. It would be a shame not be able to relive some of your significant moments.
Connectivity – You have instant access to data online so you can use your smartphone to answer emails immediately, check your bank balance, order items and many other useful things whilst on the go.
In the end I’m keeping my smartphone for the time being but adding in some limitations to my usage so I’m not using it as often. Theres a fine balance to this. Where we can use our phones productively whilst also connecting with our environment and for now I think this is the best way for me. In the future however I can definitely see myself experimenting going without to see first hand how it feels.