What’s it like going three days without a cell phone?

This week I decided to put down my phone, and leave it in my bedside drawer for three long days to see what could be gained from not having the constant distraction.

Homework takes 1/2 the amount of time without distractions
Credit: Audrey Dunn
Homework takes half the amount of time without distractions

The device, where it all happens; getting directions, checking emails, setting an alarm, and most importantly all the social media that comes along with it. With so many great assets it’s easy to forget how much time is wasted on a phone everyday. Riley Rubio admits, “On a day to day basis, I easily waste three hours of my day on my cell phone checking Instagram, refreshing my Twitter feed, and keeping Snapchat streaks.” After a day wasted on my cell phone, I asked myself, “What would it be like if I didn’t have it for three days?” The question became a reality when I locked my phone in my bedside drawer, free from all the distractions.

National Watermelon Day is August 3
National Watermelon Day is August 3

It’s 2:45 PM and the bell that signals the end of the school day has just rung. Leaving the room, every student reaches for their backpack to grab their phone that they have been deprived from for several hours. Luckily, or unluckily, I didn’t have anything to reach for and was forced to walk down the hall not looking at my cell phone. Crazy right? The thing I discovered is that every day without having my cell phone, I was able to hold a conversation with someone different walking across the bridge. If I had my phone, those conversations would have never happened and I would have probably spent the time with my eyes glued to the screen. Cell phone prevents people from having day to day conversations and keep them updated only by what people post.

Known as the world's longest continuous sidewalk, borders Tampa Bay for 4.5 miles without a break.
Credit: Victoria Baldor
Bayshore, or otherwise known as the world’s longest continuous sidewalk, borders Tampa Bay for seven miles without a break.

The first day without my phone was definitely a challenge, as I would reach for it every other second, but after a while I seemed to not even think about it and spent my time doing things I enjoyed. This week without my phone, I successfully finished the fifth book of Harry Potter, which I would never have done if I had my cell phone. Surprisingly, my homework took half the amount of time it normally does because I did not have the constant distraction.

"Without my phone there's so much more free time!" Julia Petrillo
Credit: Victoria Baldor
“Without my phone there’s so much more free time!” Julia Petrillo shares.

Without my phone, I discovered it’s the main reason for procrastination, distraction, and lack of communication. But on the other hand, the phone, if used correctly, can be a great source of sharing moments and being updated on every-day life. I have found that if there’s no set reason for going on your phone, then chances are it shouldn’t be opened and will lead to wasted time and energy. In these short three days I have found the difference between when  it’s appropriate to use my phone and when it’s best to spend my time reading a new book or catching up on the latest news.