I’M ALIVE! Long story short, my parental unit cut off my phone and I did not have the time or money to go get a new plan for awhile, so I decided that I would use the opportunity to write an entertaining blog post about what life was like for three weeks without a phone plan in a technological world.
I felt extremely lost…no seriously I got lost all the time.
For those of you who don’t know me…I’m driving 90% of the time. I have so many commitments all over the place and it just feels like I live in my car. With the long distances, comes the need to gps my way from one place to another often. However, without any data…I had no way of using my gps on the go.
This is where I had to get creative. I would screenshot maps when I was on wifi and hope that I would pay close enough attention to everywhere I needed to turn or get off. When this method failed, I would park in the parking lot of a Tim Horton’s or Starbuck’s to connect to their wifi and figure out where the hell I was. Needless to say, I was late to things a few times this month. 🙊
My friends were getting very annoyed.
I received many Facebook messages saying: “DO YOU HAVE A PHONE YET?!”. It was getting a little bit difficult to tell me the newest gossip that I just HAD to hear in that very moment. I also had to make sure that the plan for the day was completely outlined before I left the house. This lead to confusion when something came up or someone needed something from me. If I wasn’t made aware of it in the morning, I was incapable of helping or being flexible around the plans. I’m sorry besties. We’re all good now though.💁
I learned just how discriminatory the world is towards those without a phone…specifically banks!
So during these weeks of phone-less wondering, I lost my debit card TWICE. After getting my more-recent debit card, I needed to set it up with my online banking. This required a verification code. You can only receive this verification code VIA CALL OR TEXT MESSAGE. This was clearly an issue for me.
I called my bank on someone else’s phone and let them know that I was unable to set up my online banking due to the fact that I did not currently have a phone plan. I spoke to about three people who said “yes, this has been an issue before but there is nothing we can do”. So here I was thinking that people without phones are excluded from online banking, until I finally spoke to some manager. She expressed that there was one other way. I had to download a swiss email account…? It finally worked which was great, but now I have firstname.lastname@example.org and I’m just like why?😑
I was a much safer driver.
Okay…I’ll admit it. I have had the tendency to text and drive in the past. I KNOW IT’S BAD OKAY. However, being without a phone really helped me to see that no text is important enough for me to risk my life for. If I was able to go hours on end without having the ability to reply to a text, then I can definitely wait the half an hour to an hour long drive to do so.
I felt healthier.
I have said this multiple times and now I truly feel that my theory is right. The more I look at my phone in a day, the more sick to my stomach I feel. Before my phone was cut off, I was checking my social media quite heavily and constantly replying to messages, as this is a very busy time of the year for me. With that said, I kept expressing to friends and family that I thought my phone was starting to make me feel sick; and I think I was right.
After not looking at my phone anywhere near as much for a few days, that sick stomach feeling went away! You may think it is in my head but I swear that the more I look at my phone screen, the more I want to puke.
I felt more love all at once.
I really enjoyed that when I did get to a place of wifi after a few hours of being “disconnected”, I had a plethora of messages and notifications to check. This could get a little bit annoying, as it would mean I was taking a half an hour to cover all my bases; but I really enjoy the feeling of getting a message on my phone (it’s scientifically proven that it raises happiness levels) and this was like a wave of love at once! Checking your phone and seeing nothing can be sad, but when you don’t have the ability to receive messages, it doesn’t really phase you. Then you get to a place of wifi and they just start rolling in! The love was felt. Thanks friends 🙂
I didn’t have to deal with anything I didn’t want to.
This was probably the best part. You know all those messages you just don’t want to bring yourself to answer or those people you’ve been forgetting to reply to but you know you have to? They were non-existent for me!…or at least I had a good enough excuse that they were not constantly bothering me.
Anytime I did not want to reply right away or at all to someone, I just didn’t! There is no better excuse than simply stating the fact that you don’t have a phone and therefore, can not respond.
Applying to jobs was tough.
Since I recently moved out, I have been looking for a place to work in my new town. This posed as quite the difficult task as there was no phone number for employers to call me back on. For the most part, managers were quite obvious in using their facial expressions to display how strange they thought it was that I didn’t currently have a phone number.
I guess they didn’t remember what it was like to be that broke student that has to choose between gas money or having the ability to make a phone call. However, I do think that one of the managers I spoke to thought it was cool that I was “free” of technology. Still waiting on that call back though…
Most importantly, I practiced for the low data plan I have now.
Yes… I do have a phone now. However, I got the most affordable plan I could find which only gives me 1G of data. I use to have 5 😱. The past few weeks definitely trained me to wait until I am at a place of wifi to check my social media notifications. I think that my time without a phone plan really showed me how attached I once was to it. I have now adjusted my habits and will hopefully save money monthly because of it!