My phone gives me so much anxiety, yet when I think about the fact I could switch it off and end all of those feelings, I continue to charge it anyway. It’s the feeling of staying connected – if I don’t use my phone, how will people contact me? How will I talk to anyone? Will I become a recluse? Will people think I’m ignoring them? When I was in the midst of my depression, I would turn my phone off for days at a time because it made me so anxious, or I’d keep aeroplane mode on so nothing could get through to me, but I’d still be able to use my alarm for work in the mornings.
I’m not one of these people glued to my phone, by any means – a lot of the time it’s pure boredom. I get bored and feel like I have nothing else to do and therefore spend hours aimlessly scrolling through Instagram and Twitter realising how much time I’m wasting. One of my biggest pet peeves is people who use their phone when you’re out with them – if we’ve gone out to eat and you’re sat across the table from me on your phone, I get so mad. Or if I’m having a conversation with you and instead you think it’s more interesting to go on your phone and nod a quick yes every couple of seconds to make it sound like you have the faintest idea what I’m talking about. I like to be present and in the moment – I like to take everything in so I can remember every detail for when the moment’s passed. I like the idea that someone else thinks that me standing in front of them is more interesting than whatever’s going on in the rest of the world on their phone.
I think about my phone and I get anxiety, but I can’t necessarily leave it. I’ve tried. I can’t not take it out with me to places because what if I need to call someone – what if I run out of fuel or get lost somewhere or there’s an emergency. I enjoy the idea of blocking the rest of the world out and living in my own little bubble (as I’ve mentioned before) and so I will most days turn the internet off on my phone so I can’t receive messages, because otherwise I’d be living in a world where nothing outside of it really matters. Does it matter how many followers you have when you’re walking down the street getting your weekly food shopping? Does it matter how many guys liked your latest Instagram photo when you’re decorating your bedroom? If social media didn’t exist, our lives outside of it wouldn’t change because the whole thing is intangible. I like to do my own thing and not worry about checking my phone every two seconds to see who has or hasn’t messaged me. When I switch it off, the anxiety goes away and I think to myself, if it’s that easy then why don’t I always do that? But then I worry about the fact I don’t want to be the girl who necessarily doesn’t switch her phone on in order to lead a ‘normal’ life – you know? I wish I could use my phone like a normal person and not feel anxious about it every 5 minutes, but then again maybe that’s just me. Maybe it works for 99% of people and I’m part of the 1% that’s the exception, and maybe that’s okay.
Sometimes I just like to shut the world off and stop worrying about what every single other person in the whole entire world is doing – how nice is it to switch your phone off and realise that now, the only thing you can think about is what’s happening to you right now in every single moment. No worrying about what anyone else is saying or what anyone else is up to. Just you. It forces you to be in the present, and I like that very much. It grounds me and takes away the anxiety, and maybe I just have to realise that that in itself is okay, and I should stop apologising for it.
All my love,