I don’t like my phone any more

I don’t like my smartphone any more. I don’t like the feel of it in my pocket. Beckoning me, the feeling that it’s going to buzz me. I’ve started taking my phone out of my pocket and putting it far away from me. Especially when I’m with my family.

I don’t like that my kids see me on it and think some day they should be like me, also not talking to their family.

I don’t like my phone in the morning. It used to be the first thing I pick up. What can it offer me which is better than quiet meditation? The most valuable and creative time of my day. A time to think about how best to use that day. A time to talk to my wife before the busyness of the day rushes in.

I remember getting my first iPhone. I remember driving home with it and being fascinated at the blue dot in maps that actually tracked my location. I remember being in a cave for a day or two while I figured out all that I could do with it.

I remember my daughter, who was three at the time, coming in to my room in the morning, unplugging my phone and giving it to me. She’d see me check my phone first thing each morning and, being perceptive as she is, she figured out the sooner she got that out of the way, the sooner she could play with me.

I remember that little thought of caution in my head when I held my first iPhone in my hand: “You’d be just fine without this.” Truth is I’d probably have gotten lost more but maybe I’d be a millionaire too — actually having to connect with people and depend on them for help.

For me now it’s not a “oh gosh I really need to work on that.” For me now it’s a genuine dislike. It’s not a new behaviour I’m trying to enforce. I don’t like the feeling of the notifications. There’s no need for the updates to continuously harass me. It’s fine for me to check in when I need to.

My life, my days, they are filled with the people around me. Those are things I want to remember at the end. The real things, not the things served up to me digitally.