I do not own a smartphone and when I recently lost my flip phone, it seemed like the appropriate time to buy a smartphone. Still, I loved my old phone. The battery lasted for days and days, and it was small and cute (who doesn’t love miniature-sized things?). I personally think it grew legs and walked away to find more excitement following my lack of use. I often have my phone on silent, so I could not even employ the ol’ trick of calling it to listen for ringing in the distance to locate it.
When a few days had passed and it did not turn up, my husband insisted I get a phone. I had been due for an upgrade for well over four years, but I held on to the same phone because it worked and I liked it for what it was, just a small phone. Small phones are apparently impossible to find when lost though. Did I upgrade to a smartphone? Nope.
I cannot tell you often I get made fun of for not having a smartphone, also, for not accepting text messaging on my *new* flippy phone. My friends laughed when they heard I got another flip phone because “they still make those?!” Yep and mine doesn’t accept text messages to boot! They may be sent to me, but I never receive any (they are blocked on my phone). I think they dissipate into the cyber ether. I have just as many friends (if not more than the average bear) and my friendships are genuine. I don’t need Facebook or a smartphone to stay in touch with the people who matter to me (obviously I email quite a bit though).
Am I getting defensive? Probably, so I apologize if I offend anyone. There’s no judgment for the reasons why you own a smartphone, tablet, a TV in your bathroom… truthfully, I think all those things are cool. Live and let live I say!
I make a good living, I could afford a smartphone (and our current cell phone plan has free texting <<gasp>>!). It’s fair to admit I also do not own an iPad, we do not subscribe to any cable service or anything like Hulu or Netflix, and we have just one TV in my house (no TVs in any bedrooms). We have one laptop and one iPod Touch. We’re not afraid of technology, but I choose not to succumb any further.
I stumbled upon the Minimalists blog and I relate to it on so many levels, but I really like how they ask one question – “How might your life be better if you owned fewer material possessions?”
10 Reasons Why I Do Not Own a Smartphone
- I choose to live life rather than document it. I see a lot of photos being taken of kids playing, but I want to be the one playing with my kids. I want to be aware of and involved in what’s going on around me, which means instead of taking pictures to look like I am having a great time; I am just going to focus on having a great time.
- My car has an awesome built-in GPS. Also, getting lost once in a while isn’t the end of the world. After all, Christopher Columbus was lost when he landed in America.
- I like to look people in the eye when talking to them. It feels disingenuous when someone is distracted with their phone while I’m trying to have a conversation.
- I do not want my children to require a screen to do an activity or be easily distracted. Research supports, kids learn social skills from interacting with people, not a screen.
- If I need to look something up in a pinch, just about everyone has a smartphone and they are happy to help me
- Data plans confuse me, what am I paying for exactly? Why do I need to upgrade or have unlimited anything?
- My time is spent doing things I love and I have something to show for it (like a delicious cake, actual photo albums of baby pictures, quilt, blog, or learn a new skill like speaking Spanish)
- Along the same vein, my hands would rather do something else like play with my kids, bake, sew, hold real books when reading and not busy themselves with tapping on a screen
- I do not want to waste time playing on my phone (it’s literally just a phone to make calls, nothing more). I have a full-time job, 3 little kids, a husband, a home, many outside interests and friends – time is my greatest commodity and I would rather do something productive and meaningful than mess around on a phone
- Simplify, minimize, enjoy life without technology – we managed long car trips and summers without apps and videos streaming 24/7 on handheld devices, I expect my family will be able to function without a screen in front of their faces
Granted, I will eat these words when traveling on an airplane overseas with three little girls (2 in our laps) – if they want to watch TV for the whole flight – so be it! There’s a time and place, and keeping my girls quiet to avoid meltdowns at 40,000 feet is an exception I’m willing to acquiesce to. Still, it’ll be the TV’s in the back of our seats because I’m not buying a smartphone.