At the beginning of October I was forced into a major life decision. Not a kidney operation, not a change of house, but a change of phone. Some people will scoff at this, but actually in retrospect it has been a major life decision.
At the time I was forced into the change, as my trusty iPhone 4S of over 5 years had given up. I perused the internet and paid attention to TV adverts- so much information on device features, tariff variations. Plus the ever growing battle between Android and Apple.
Having finally taken the plunge I walked into my local phone shop and started the conversation. The very helpful and also eager for my business sales person gave me the standard spiel. I stopped them and said, “I fundamentally want a phone, here is my meagre budget what are my choices?” The inevitable happened, in that I was faced with the choice of, another iPhone (lower specification but high social status) or a Samsung (higher specification but unknown system and arguably lower social status). I went for the Samsung.
Yes, maybe I should’ve just pushed the boat out and signed for over £40 a month on a contract for the latest iPhone 6S. This would have transferred my existing apps, accounts and endless history of usage seamlessly onto a new handset. Alas based on my budget, preference and fairly spontaneous final decision, I went with the Samsung.
In retrospect this has been a major life decision. For months I have been grappling with my lack of life balance- especially the ability to switch off or stop at the end of a day. Since getting my lovely new Samsung and not flooding it with apps, email accounts or social media, I am back to simply having a communication device. No longer is the virtual, 24/7 world at my fingertips, and this is a good thing. For example, I now use the train or run to the gym without the worry of how I could occupy that space and time with my phone. My email is no longer operational 24 hours a day 7 days a week. I am, at the moment, less inclined to record and communicate my every move whether through: image, status, call, tweet or message.
This has reminded me of a time before the mobile phone (yes I am old enough to remember that) when phone/virtual life was not always turned on or accessible. I am recalling teenage memories of bickering with my mum over who could use the internet or house phone in an evening! Back to the present day, and the reduction of my phone to a mere communication device has significantly helped me and my phone/life balance. I am giving my brain more time to think or be sedentary. When I do communicate it is with purpose and not constant. This is maybe also connected to a work/life or social/life balance (another blog post to create). However, for now I am content in regaining some phone/life balance by the major life decision of simplifying my mobile phone and reducing my usage of it.
p.s. if you are ironically reading this on a mobile phone, even an iPhone, please don’t think I would disapprove, instead consider how much and how often you rely on such device!