French Mum, humanitarian, restless explorer and doer on sabbatical in Cebu (Philippines): one Attila in each arm, I am exploring the “toddlers safe” corners of the region, while trying to keep some room for Me.
I felt down, heard a crack and my Iphone still in my back pocket, just thought “Please Lord, let that be my leg!”. I must have said it loud enough for the hubby to give me a puzzled look and say “darling, you are really weird! You do need a proper detox!“.
Did you know that 24% of smartphone users check their phone while driving? 48% use their phone at the gym and that 85%, instead of hugging their beloved one and just smiling at the sun, would rather check their phone within 15′ of waking up??
Did you know that smartphone users check their Facebook about 15 times a day, and 50% even at the movie??? I wish I could laugh at it and tell you in total honesty “ridiculous! Me? ne-ver!“…
In South East Asia in general and in the Philippines in particular, people are constantly checking their smartphone. All cafés and restaurants have at least a dozen of plugs in case you need to recharge your battery, wifi is free, so whatever you eat, breath and do will be posted on the new holy trinity _ IG, Facebook and Twitter. It is a widespread addiction, and no horror movie can surpass the sensation of touching your pocket and not finding your iphone! Been there, done that an incredible number of times.
When we were in France last month, the contrast was amazing.
Free wifi is still scare over there, so I eventually put down my phone and started to talk with the people around me. After a few days, I achieved the impossible: I put my phone into my bag. Not too far from me, but not at my finger tip anymore. Marcel noticed the milestone and silently gave me an encouraging nod “you can do it. I know you can“. My chin was trembling, my heartbeat was faster than usual, but I left the phone in my bag for 240 minutes!
Being a woman of challenge, I also resisted the burning temptation to take pictures of the Eiffel Tower. Oddly enough, I enjoyed this long forgotten feeling of looking UP! I was eventually in the real life, in the moment. Totally in the present.
The detox also had its share of physical benefits: less stress, less tension in my neck and eyes. So much time at hand actually. I am now listening again to the cab drivers’ stories, talking to people in the jeepney, and I know I offer more quality time to the people around me.
I also re-discovered the pleasure of reading. A book. A real one, made of paper! I always complained of lack of time, but I was wrong. I can definitely spare a few hours a day when I turn off my phone.
We have set up a new routine at home: turn off cellular data from 5 to 8, to be totally with the kids. I am offline and reachable only by text at least 5h a day, from 10 till 3. Week end are detox days, no internet connection from 10 to 8. Now I really appreciate the moment I turn on the wifi again, it feels like the goo’ol’ days when I was opening the mail box..
Try it, it is really worth the little effort : there is an incredible world waiting to be explored out there!
Just for you, to help with the detox:
You can also join groups of people who also want to live in real life, such as Folkrebellion
And as ironically as it may seem, download apps that will help you break free 🙂
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