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Hang up and Hang out

A day without screens

By Victoria Gaikwad

Trying out new things is always different, such as new foods, places, or music. How about trying to go one full day without any type of technology? I had gone on a social media detox but was curious if I could go without my phone glued to me. The reason for this was because so many of us are so deeply attached to our phones. Any device or screen is basically like our oxygen tank, and we can’t survive without them. Although I may need my phone or chromebook throughout the day, the only time I could get on my chromebook would be when my teacher says is necessary but only those websites or assignments, as well as if any emergency arises with family or friends, I can check in but they would be aware of this experiment before hand. Instead of constantly looking at my phone, I would actually interact with the people around me and observe what is actually going on around me. I would also write down things that happen or that I feel the need to post about or send.

Going a day without something that I carry with me everyday and everywhere was easier than expected. At the beginning of the week I decided to have my phone in my bag and only taken out in needed situations, as well as not getting on my computer unless a teacher advised to or there was an assignment to do. I found myself checking my pockets and automatically thinking, “I have to snap this,” or “I haven’t checked my phone in a minute,” which was exactly what I thought would happen, considering I am attached to my phone. As the day went on I found myself not worrying so much about my phone and actually interacting with people. On a regular day I would typically only say hi occasionally or be in my own world on my phone and ignore those around me. This day I smiled more to those who just made eye contact with me and said hey to a lot more familiar faces than usual. Although out of norm it was a refresher to just talk to people in front of me, rather than through a screen.

I sat down with some students as well as my dad, also known as  Professor Gaikwad, to see if they think that could do the same experiment I was testing out. Only one out of the 3 confidently stated that they would be able to survive a day without using any technology. One student Ali Brown, stated that they couldn’t due to the fact that everything they do is on their phone, and if not on their computer, then Netflix would be binged on their device.

“I talk to everyone on my phone, have notes and reminders on here, and also have any school app needed already downloaded on my phone.” Says Ali Brown

To my surprise my dad who is a little old school also stated that his life is basically on his phone. Even though he claims I am always on my phone, he is constantly on his. Therefore I had to prove his claim wrong.

“Although I did not grow up using phones as much as we do now, I am getting very used to the technology world and am welcoming it.” Says Dr. Gaikwad

He also mentioned that being an adult was too vigorous, because something is always going on with something or someone and he needs to be aware and have his phone on him at all times. I then asked them in replacement of their devices, if they could carry around a journal and write down thoughts or ideas rather than using their phone or checking social media. In response they all did say that they would willingly try it out and see if they would last or how long they would.

Statistically people older than the age of 6 should not spend more than 7 hours in front of screen a day . According to Thrive Global, which is an online business website that offers companies and individuals sustainable, science-based solutions. They say that limits should be implemented but are negotiable, unless screen time is interfering with sleep, physical activity, or social interaction.

Walking around not being on my phone, made me so much more aware of my surroundings and able to interact without being so focused on who snapped me or texted me. It was honestly a much needed detox. I would consider doing it again, because it made me realize that I don’t need technology as much as I thought and it feels better not continuously worrying about what’s going on on my phone.  

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