Friday, July 3, 2015

Week Two Roundup: Spend Less Time with Your Phone

For the next six weeks we'll be highlighting the artist Karmasama and her positive art/messages. You can read about it in this post

Holly: Even the best laid plans sometimes go awry. 

I was actually doing okay, or so I told myself, Monday through Thursday. I stayed away from social media except for twice a day. I even felt more productive as I cleaned instead of Instagraming, worked instead of pinning, and spent time with my sister instead of posting to her Facebook. I feel like I did...okay. Better than I usually am. Where I feel like I went wrong was tonight. I was helping my sister with the sleeper sofa but lost my phone in the process. I was supposed to get her some more Ibuprofen for the killer sunburn she got today, but instead I spent 20 minutes searching frantically for my phone. It was an eye-opener. I need to be more aware of my surroundings and the people in them. What would have happened if I had shrugged and let my phone die under a cushion? Nothing I couldn't  have missed. 

Chris: Like Holly, things didn't quite go right for me, either.

I figured this would be a breeze, since I don't spend too much time on my phone as it is. It bugs me to no end to see folks checking their phones when I'm trying to talk to them--or even if I just see a couple at a table, both of them staring at a screen rather than one another. So when I'm with other people, I make sure that my phone stays tucked away--regardless of how often it chimes. (However, I do try to check when it's an actual call, seeing as how rare those are for me.)

Rather than spend less time with my phone, I figured that I'd spend my digital time more wisely. Translation: Don't check the same stupid sites all the time--even when you did two minutes ago. And while I tried and, for the most part, was successful in this area, only going to the few sites I usually do on occasion, I realized something else. I am on my phone. A lot.

When I'm by myself, I tend to scroll through Facebook obsessively, even when nothing has changed. And recently, I added Tumblr into my world, and this past week, I found myself flying through my feed, checking for new followers, finding new bits of nothing. I also google anything and everything that comes to mind. This might not sound terrible on its own, but what bothered me is the fact that I stopped whatever I was doing--reading a book, revising our novel, working on a piece of art, or playing the latest Batman game. I pushed all of it aside for my phone.

Such moments can be, as Holly says, quite eye opening, and I do hope that I learn from this realization. Even if I'm not checking my phone and detracting from my face to face interactions, I can easily let it control whatever else I'm doing. Someone else might not be hurting from my neglection, but my own projects and tasks become that much more drawn out, more scattered, and harder to complete, which means I have to work longer, and that means I have to shun personal interaction to do what needs doing. And, to me, pushing someone aside for work is as bad as checking my messages while in their company. If not worse.

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