COLUMN LIKE I SEE 'EM
My phone? It’s pretty sweet. But I’ve also been leaving it at home for the past couple months.
I can turn this cellular device into a mobile hotspot to broadcast a private WiFi network anywhere I have cellular service. I also have an unlimited data plan with Verizon.
This means I have a limitless access to fast, reliable Internet practically anywhere in the U.S. I don't need to pay for Internet because I already have it at my fingertips.
That, however, all changed once I acquired roommates.
My roommates wanted to pay for Internet and split the bill between us, and I obviously didn't want that. Once they heard why, they didn't want to either.
Basically, for a while, I've been leaving my phone at home. People have homework to do or Netflix to watch, and when I walk out the door, the Internet follows suit.
Now, I've never been one to willingly go outside; everything I'd ever want is already provided to me inside. But sometimes I need to transition from one inside to another inside, and that requires a mediatory outside.
And, now I know, those outsides are so pleasant without my phone.
I used to feel gagged with anxiety if I went anywhere without my phone. It was scary to be severed from the world. What if someone needed me? What if I missed out on fun or food?
But all this time spent without my phone has been more liberating than debilitating. On the rare chance I do miss a phone call, text, or email, I'm back in a few hours and receive the info all the same.
I use to dread being away from my phone, but leaving that panic behind as well creates a sort of euphoria. The feeling of freedom permeates the air, like I can do what I want when I want. And I can. And I do.
More than the absence of detriment, though, is the removal of pressure. I don't know about you, but my brain is full of . . . stress. However much I try to alleviate that stress, my phone has a real handy way of reminding me and adding on more of its own. Leaving it behind allows room to forget, a commodity I didn't know I craved so badly.
Breaks from my phone are often the highlight of my day.
I'm not saying having a phone is bad in any way. Lord knows how much I use and need it, but if I've learned anything from my addictive tendencies, moderation is the key to a happy, healthy life.
My phone might be important, a necessity, but to me, time away from it is more so ten fold.
Kevin Niederman is a junior nursing major hailing from Santa Rosa CA, about an hour north of San Francisco. He enjoys cartoons, hats, and driving ridiculous distances for food that has the potential of being amazing.