The idea for this post came to me spontaneously, I’m writing this post whilst waiting for my flight in Gdansk, Poland which is due for departure in 4 hours, meaning I have plenty of time to zone out and dedicate to some much needed post writing.
Over Christmas I have spent some time in Norway, right at the start of my trip my phone ran pout of battery and since then hasn’t turned back on despite numerous attempts of charging and trawling through forums for fixes. Alas, no fix, so I’ve decided to just wait it out and take it to the ‘Geniuses’ at Apple when I’m back in Liverpool.
Despite the general annoyance of not being able to document my travels with pictures and access social media on my own handheld device, I have tried to turn this negative into a positive, which leads me onto the topic of this article.
If you walk around any city, town, airport, train station you will see what is now considered the norm, masses of people walking round with their faces glued to their phones, people bumping into each other due to a lack of awareness and a general lack of being present. I am no saint, I am guilty of this as I’m sure you are too.
Having my phone ‘out of action’ during my travels I felt a sense of awareness and being more connected to the environment around me. Engaging more in activities where I would usually just be sat scrolling, taking in the sights around me. Even the sounds on the plane which would usually be drowned out by my Spotify playlist.
Sometimes it can be nice to just relax and zone out from the world around us but if we continue to do this all-day everyday we begin to lose touch with what it means to be human, turning into robots.
You’ll be surprised what you miss when you’re not in the moment, transcending to your alternate reality where the screen of your phone is your captor.
Try it, take your earphones out, un-glue yourself from your phone and enjoy the environment you’re around. Too many times I’ve spent time with friends attached to my phone, just aimlessly scrolling, yet when I think back to the best memories I have with the people close to me, they are always the times my phone is away and I am in the moment.
I know I’m going to try and practice what I preach more. Put my phone away when I’m out for food with my girlfriend, unplug the earphones when I’m out shopping around town, taking time to listen as I walk past the buskers on the street to appreciate their music and just try to engage more in the environment that I’m in. With one exception, the headphones are staying firmly plugged in whilst in the gym! It’s all about finding a nice balance, just don’t let yourself be controlled by a slab of metal and electronics.