Uncomfortable. Anxious. Isolated. Cloistered. Claustrophobic.
These are feelings I’m genuinely experiencing on my first full day without my smartphone (by choice), although I’m at work, hooked up to the internet and surrounded by land lines and coworkers’ phones.
I don’t have my phone!
Ugh. At first blush, this experiment to go a week or two without a smartphone is way more affecting than I thought it would be. So far, I’m not a fan.
You know that feeling when you’re a kid and you go away for a week to summer camp or something, and before you make friends you just want to go home? (You can’t imagine the place ever being fun, although by the end of the week you don’t want to go home.)
I want my phone back!
At the moment, it’s so tempting to pop down to the Verizon store a few blocks away and get a new phone (i.e., call my parents, feign illness and have them come get me).
But I won’t. I already told myself (and you guys) that I’m doing this, so I’m doing this. Thoreau went into the woods to find perspective and clarity—I can go into the figurative woods (of life without instant access to everyone I know and all the happenings of the world).
But why do I feel so…squirmy? (My knee is bouncing up and down as I write this.) And why do I feel claustrophobic? Like the world has shrunk in around me. Like my immediate surroundings are my entire existence.
Hmm. This experiment is so far more than I bargained for. It’s even hinting at existential elements. (I wonder if some kind of Zen peace is waiting on the other side.)