Sunday, February 9, 2014

Smartphone Self-Reflection

I've done it. I've made the switch from basic phone to smart phone. While I know I'm not the last, I'm definitely late to the game. As in, it's embarrassing how slow I am at figuring this thing out. This switch wasn't originally my plan--U.S. Cellular pulled out of Chicago, leaving my phone in a limbo of eternally roaming despite my nationwide plan (don't ask me to explain--the customer service guy couldn't even tell me how that worked), so despite my easy comfort with my brick phone, I had to move on.

Now, for the first time in my cellphone-having life, I'm not on my family's family plan; I took a big relationship step and joined Jesus' plan. That's right, we made it phone bill official. It took about 20 minutes for us to have our first phone bill fight. Namely, I wanted him to pay his balance and he refused, out of spite. Up next: I fight with customer service to allow me to make changes on my line, despite my non-primary account holder status. Why is that a thing? It's 2014, can't we have co-primaries? Or can't we trust that if I have all the required numbers/passcodes and I've sat on the line for more than several minutes, all I really want to do is switch my number?

I'm getting all worked up again and that's not why I came here. I came here to make a Self-Reflection Statement. I came here to be intentional about my phone. On this, the day my phone goes officially active, I pledge to not get sucked in. I pledge to be a smart user of a smart phone. I have gadgets, and they already suck me in, so this is like a renewal of simple living vows--I want to take a step back from all my devices and recognize their function in my life.

Without making a bunch of rules and putting restrictions on myself, I plan to cut down my mindless internet time. I haven't downloaded games onto my phone, instead focusing on apps that will simplify my life (CTA tracker and virtual banking) or allow me to communicate with all my favorite people (international texting). Things like online to-do lists, grocery lists, calendars, and budget calculators sound practical, but I'm wary of downloading these things willy-nilly. I'm a hand-written, hard copy sort of person. I don't think digital lists will be useful (or used in general)--at least until I learn how to do basics like answer calls or send group texts.

In short, I want my smartphone to work for me, not the other way around. Pre-smartphone, I had to be savvy about what places had free wi-fi (looking at you, Target), places where I could check my email during work, so I hope having access all the time alleviates some of that stress. And while I rarely get lost (especially in Chicago, especially after living here for 3.5 years), knowing that GPS is at my fingertips will be nice. I'm going to enjoy having music and knowing where my bus is and having sibling conversations with Bailey and Quinn. This is the start of something smart.

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