A week without work
So last week was spring break, and I travelled to sunny southern Florida without my computer or phone. This was the first time since I started working on computers 8 years ago that I’ve gone without it for more than a day or two.
It was an experience, but I wouldn’t do it again.
I’ve gone without my phone for over a month before, and I didn’t mind. A phone is a constant connection that in my opinion is often unneeded, and after college I plan on primarily using a flip phone for a year to see how it works, while keeping my calendar and group messages on my computer. I think it will be interesting to see the results of doing so, as many people my age have never been without a smart phone or device. When I went without my phone for a month this summer, it felt refreshing. The temptation to get on my phone instead of looking around or talking to strangers around me wasn’t there, and I felt sharper and more aware because of it. Also, I didn’t feel as ‘out of the loop’ as most might think, as you realize the people you normally talk to or want to see will still find a way to contact and hang out with you. You’ll find when you go without a phone for a time (or switch to a dumb phone) that you’ll see things others around you don’t while they’re on their phones.
However, going without a phone only works if you have a computer, where you can still answer email and some communication and more specific times of day, which is necessary for most types of work. This past week, I often felt I was missing new developments in the computing and financial fields, where the landscape often changes rapidly. Perhaps it’s a sign I’m too attached, but I love working on computers, and being away from something I love to do for a week almost felt like I quit drinking water to cut the empty calories. Wherever I go, I’ll be bringing my computer with me in the future. Whatever your work is, I think it’s healthy to go some time without technology, and see how you feel about it. Notice what you see, and notice what you’re missing. You might never do it again, but you’ll learn a lot; you won’t regret it.
Thanks for reading.