I’m A Slave 4 U

I am a slave to my phone. Yes. Ugh what a first world, millennial problem to have!

My phone is probably the most useful thing I own. It’s great for when I have a moment of inspiration and need to write something down in my Notes, or to call my friends and catch up on life, or to Google random topics that I’m interested in when my laptop is out of reach, or to save me from socially awkward situations!

But as of lately, I’ve been starting to feel anxious whenever it’s on the other side of the room to me, or if it’s upstairs when I’m downstairs. I’m not quite sure when it began, but I seem to have acquired the bad habit of needing to pick up my phone every 5 minutes, for absolutely no reason.

I’m fine if I leave it at home and go out, because I know that I’m physically incapable of getting to it. But if it’s in my vicinity and not by my side or in my hand, I just don’t feel right. And that’s messed up!

The funny thing is that I may pay for it every month, but the fact of the matter is that my phone owns me. I’m addicted. I know I’m not the only one suffering from this epidemic though. Whenever I look around the train compartment on my morning and evening commutes, best believe that 95% of people are on their phones too: we’re like a bunch of gormless robots doomed to live our lives bowing our heads before our almighty phone lords.

So what do we gain from aimlessly scrolling through apps like Twitter and reading random people’s Tweets for prolonged periods of time? Nothing meaningful or substantial, that’s for sure. I know that all I’m doing is filling my head with the baseless opinions of people I’ll never know or meet, under the pretence of using it as a “news source”; in reality it’s an unproductive information overload that does nothing but make my mind race. But most importantly, all this scrolling prevents me from being present and in the moment.

I’ve noticed how I’ve also gotten into the habit of being preoccupied with my phone whenever my nephew and niece come round…I used to hate those kind of people! The truth is, they’re 6 and 3 at the moment; they want to play with me right now. Fast forward 5 years and they won’t care, they’ll be too busy on their own phones talking to their friends and I would’ve missed the chance to make memories with them and have an active role in their lives.

So I’m sorry to say Phoney, your reign of terror is officially over.

I’m done going on Youtube for hours on end when I’m bored, I’m done checking Twitter for no good reason, I’m done scrolling through my camera roll when there’s absolutely no need to. I refuse to let a little electronic cuboid thingamajig have so much power over me. Instead I shall occupy myself with other more productive and enriching outlets such as books, exercise, cooking (and obviously playing with my poor Massi-deprived nephew and niece!).

I’m not saying that I’m going to completely disown my phone, because let’s be real, I pay to use this insidious little device every month, so best believe I’m going to get my money’s worth! But as many benefits as it has to offer, too much of anything is never good. Now that I’ve acknowledged the hold that it has over me, my phone time needs to be moderated. When I pick it up I want it to be because I want to, not because I feel like I have to. All I can say is praise the lord I never got Instagram, because that, ladies and gentlemen, would have been the death of me!

22 replies

  1. I need my phone to study, for WordPress etc. Like you I too realised that I needlessly check phone for social media apps. Just last month I deleted all those apps which don’t Enric my life in any way! Life is not so restless now😉

  2. I’d like to offer an alternate point of view. Could it be that you are not addicted? Maybe you are anxious, and your phone is your comfort object. Maybe you are extroverted and the phone is the go-to-tech to connect with those who enrich your life. And maybe you don’t have anything more interesting to focus on, sometimes. Maybe there are several things going on, and addiction is just a very small part.

  3. Right!? And to think that just 10 years ago we were satisfied with picking up our phones occasionally to (press one digit 3 times to get a letter) and send a text; or that shortly before that we would actually go outside and hang out. I agree with you, moderation is key.

  4. My phone curses me, condemns me with endless access for others to my free time; in front of my family I use curse terms when it rings, I even got a phone call in a church!!

    And the kicker…
    I’M the only one who picks the blasted thing up when it rings!! Everyone else is never bleeping available

    So me and my phone started therapy, couples therapy but then it rang, I cursed it out and the therapist ran whilst I spoke to my boss
    So didn’t work!

    But rest assured, unless I’m unconscious that f***ING bar steward is glued to my hip and ready to fast draw, just don’t expect me to sound happy on the other end!!

  5. You are right. I do not use Insta or Facebook but Youtube. Yes I keep scrolling for no reason. I too have realised thia many times and want to make my time for more productive things. Let’s ‘a device’ not control us.

  6. ugh I think we all have this problem. I have to make rules for how I can use my phone. I basically gave myself a curfew and I don’t allow myself to use my phone after a certain time unless someone has texted me or calls. But no browsing through Instagram before bed .(you are so lucky you never got Instagram. I’m on it way too much)

  7. Yes, I completely agree! The nice thing is, I’m in high school, and still don’t have a phone. It’s actually something I’m proud of, even though others “pity” me. Some are incredulous when I say I don’t have one. If I had a phone, I’d definitely be addicted, so I’m glad I don’t. I’m surviving!

    • In all honesty you really don’t need one yet, like you said, you’re surviving regardless! Sounds like you’ve got your head screwed on though, so whenever you do end up getting a phone, I think you’ll be smart enough to not let it control you 🙂

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