I ditched my iPhone for a Flip cellphone – here is the way it went

I ditched my iPhone for a Flip cellphone – here is the way it went

Most individuals had been confused after I instructed them I used to be giving up my iPhone. “Why?” “Can we nonetheless discuss?” “Is it 2003?” My writing group was the one group of people that appeared to grasp why I needed to disconnect digitally.

I would not say I am hooked on my iPhone. I do not cost it subsequent to my mattress; I exploit an precise alarm clock as an alternative. I’ve a lockbox, and I put my cellphone in it for hours at a time on the weekends. I often examine a e book every week. However I nonetheless discovered myself continuously reaching for my iPhone to distract or entertain myself, and it was severely impacting my capability to focus creatively.

I reached out to Mathilde Meroni, a writer at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, about the above tweet, and why she thinks writers have been more inclined to give up their smartphones or at least understand why someone might want to:

“What I mean is that although being a writer/poet does not necessarily lead to a desire to ditch a certain kind of technology, the two are also not separate in that being a writer… requires a certain level of interest in the world. And that having a smartphone It can take away your ability to notice your thoughts and the world around you by focusing all your energy on the screen.

“I hope I don’t sound like I think writers are special, magical beings who think more than others, but maybe some people realize that it’s absolutely necessary for their art to be compromised by little things that suck up attention. My roommate, who has a flip phone, is a little younger than me — she’s Age 25 – I asked her if she thought it was generational. She said that, on the contrary, she thought it was about feeling outside her generation.


After doing some research (aka reading admin posts on Reddit dumbphones community), I settled on the F1 Orchid from Sunbeam Wi-fi as a result of it has a touchscreen, additional options like climate and navigation, and no web browser or social media.

One in every of my finest mates, Michelle, helped me work out find out how to arrange my cellphone. I turned off my iPhone, took out my SIM card, and inserted it into my flip cellphone. It was heavy in my hand, and my fingers had bother recognizing my new cellphone. The touchscreen made the cellphone simpler to make use of, however there was some preliminary friction that signaled my mind to finish the expertise earlier than I even began; I ignored the urge to throw the flip cellphone again into the field it arrived in and transfer on. Earlier than I turned off my iPhone, I had written down the names and numbers of 35 individuals I talk with repeatedly and entered them into my flip cellphone, so I would not should ship any “Sorry! I bought a brand new iPhone! Who’s that?” Texting – and so I can keep away from having to examine my iPhone all week.

My new lifeline.

First day

After ending my morning routine and going out for a fast stroll, I checked my cellphone after which my electronic mail. It was a complicated however enjoyable feeling, my morning was really my very own. I moved by the primary few hours with out feeling rushed or like I needed to reply to anybody.

I’ve develop into much less reliant on social media and extra on newsletters (and my shut mates) for article suggestions, so I do not really feel like I’ve “missed” something. For instance, I found Self-importance galleryThe newest Actual Housewives piece from the Actual Housewives and I have been in a position to maintain my finger on the cultural pulse of this nation because of Emily Sundberg’s enterprise e-newsletter, Feed Me.

My information and media consumption was already cryptic, even earlier than this expertise. I repeatedly kind “nytimes.com” into my browser’s handle bar. If I am house within the night, I watch ABC World Information Tonight with David Muir. And after I work at home, more often than not, CNN is on within the background. But it surely was fascinating to understand how, with out social media, this consumption appeared more healthy and fewer consuming. I wasn’t coping with algorithm manipulation or caught in a suggestions loop of anger or misinformation.

The foldable cellphone was successful at dinner.

I could not work out find out how to reshare IG Tales on desktop, so I am sharing it right here.

Typing textual content messages on the contact keyboard was nonetheless a difficulty for me on day one, and a few of my mates could not attain me — after deactivating iMessage, it might take 24-48 hours for it to start out, which is annoying however… By the second day, every part was high-quality.

Though my flip cellphone had maps and Waze, it did not have subway instructions, which made for a really fascinating week for me, as a girl who by no means knew the place she was going and managed to get misplaced in her neighborhood. Earlier than heading anyplace, I wrote down instructions in a small pocket book I carried with me. Actually, it wasn’t dangerous, and it compelled me to get to know the town I’ve lived in for a decade with out utilizing know-how as a crutch.

The a part of the day the place I felt the absence of my iPhone essentially the most was within the night, after work, after I did not should attend a piece occasion. But it surely felt superbly liberating. That first night time, I learn a little bit, watched the Lions beat the Raiders, after which went to mattress round 10:30 p.m.

Here is how the remainder of the week went for me:

The Nice

Much less anxiousness and higher sleep

I wasn’t continuously checking the information, texts, emails or social media, which meant I wasn’t bombarded with communication and overstimulation; I felt calmer, much less anxious, and did not really feel like I used to be “failing” to maintain up with the torrent of knowledge. Research have proven that being continuously linked to the Web can result in extra stress and anxiousness.

I slept higher than I had in months. I did not get up in the midst of the night time, which occurs typically, and it did not take me lengthy to go to sleep after going to mattress. I additionally grew to become extra delicate to caffeine. I bought my typical drink – oat milk – from the espresso store close to my residence at 10 a.m., and I could not sleep that night time. The one vital change I made was to considerably scale back my display screen time. I examined it once more one other day — oat milk latte, 10 a.m. — and once more, I actually could not sleep. My unscientific opinion is that as a result of I am not overstimulated by my iPhone and obtain much less blue gentle, my physique has develop into extra delicate to caffeine.

Extra mindfulness

Not having the ability to distract myself at any time when I felt bored, anxious, burdened, or drained compelled me to sit down with my emotions and made me extra conscious of the place I used to be on the swinging pendulum of an ever-changing emotional, psychological, and non secular state. It additionally made me cease utilizing my cellphone as a crutch throughout social conditions.

Once I spoke with author Liana Satenstein about her expertise with the foldable cellphone, she shared related ideas. “I discover a distinction in my temper and emotional state after I use a flip cellphone in comparison with an iPhone. “I can not focus, and I really feel extra anxious when I’ve my iPhone,” she says. “Even when it is locked within the different room, there’s all the time the temptation. Even when your apps are down or there is a time restrict on utilizing them, there’s all the time a sense which you could get again to them once more.

Not nice

No Google Maps

Actually, I by no means know the place I am going, even with an iPhone, so this wasn’t too annoying. I additionally loved trying up instructions and writing them down earlier than I left my residence – ​​I felt much less rushed as a result of I needed to plan forward. Moreover, the foldable cellphone helped me get a greater sense of course.

It was a bit troublesome after I bought misplaced (which occurs lots, not surprisingly). Throughout one flip, I needed to name my little sister, Melody, so she might assist me work out the place to go.

There isn’t a iMessage

I am in 18 group chats (three of that are inside my instant household alone). Expertise can present a false sense of intimacy, however it might additionally improve relationships. I like chatting with my mates, sharing humorous tweets, and interacting with textual content messages. Non-iPhone group messaging does not attain the identical degree.

What then?

I felt that my expertise with the foldable cellphone was successful. I had extra significant connections with mates and strangers and extra room for impartial and artistic visions. To be trustworthy, even with a few of the friction that comes with utilizing a flip cellphone, I have not actually missed my smartphone.

After every week of being away from my iPhone, my display screen was like sending a dopamine heater to the mind. The colours appeared brighter and seemed extra engaging. I hated it and instantly needed to return to the cocoon of my flip cellphone.

As an alternative, I’ve landed someplace in between. I deleted many of the pointless apps from my iPhone, and now I primarily use them in the course of the work week and work-related occasions. On the weekends, I will use my flip cellphone. This has made an enormous distinction – I assumed I all the time wanted time without work till I made the change.

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