When I learned that we were going to have to unplug, I was super excited! I have needed to take some time for myself and I thought this would be the perfect way to start. I committed to delete my Facebook and Snapchat apps and not use my phone after 9pm. I want to use this time to spend with my family and friends, especially during the Thanksgiving holiday. I documented my journey each day below.
Day 1 (11/21) Monday: I explained the unplugged challenge to my husband and he agreed to hold me accountable by hiding my phone from me at night. I deleted my Facebook app on my phone a while ago because I was fed up with all of the negativity. I still login on my laptop from time to time, but I do not do it every day. I think this small change has improved my attitude about different things and it is a conversation starter. Usually when I see my friends they say “did you see on Facebook”, and now I can say “no, tell me what happened”.
Day 2 (11/22) Tuesday: Yesterday, I was totally motivated, but today I noticed that I am itching to check my Snapchat. There’s no good reason why I should feel this way, I just enjoy watching people’s stories. I didn’t give into temptation and I didn’t use my phone after 9pm, even when my friend called me.
Day 3 (11/23) Wednesday: Today I had a workday at school and I was so productive because I didn’t have my phone to distract me. My husband and I started watching a new TV show on Netflix, something that we haven’t done in a while. We both said that it was nice to spend time together, even if we were just watching TV. (My husband works swing shift so I don’t get to spend a lot of time with him anyway!)
Day 4 (11/24) Thursday: Previously I deleted my snapchat, but ended up re-downloading it because many of my friends were asking why I hadn’t replied to their snaps. I went to Thanksgiving at my in-laws and had a discussion on the “You Name It” Challenge. My husband has two brothers who are 19 and 16 and they all about social media! They filled me in on what I had missed the past few days. I challenged them to unplug and they looked at me like I was crazy. I forgot to have my husband “hide” my phone because we were not at our house. As we were driving home around 11:00 and I was checking my emails, I noticed that I had failed today’s challenge big time! How else was I supposed to catch up on the Black Friday sales!?
Day 5 (11/25) Friday: Deleted my snapchat again because I am dedicated to end this challenge on a strong note. My parents came to my house for the weekend and of course my mom and I slipped away for a few hours to do some Black Friday shopping. I didn’t use my phone for social media at all because we were busy all day.
Day 6 (11/26) Saturday: Since my parents were still in town, I didn’t use my phone much today either. It was nice to have a conversation at lunch. I’m really noticing how everyone around me is so in tune to their phones. Even my mom checked her phone constantly at dinner. When I made a comment about unplugging for school, she said “I was wondering why you weren’t on your phone!” This made me really think–how much am I on my phone and not enjoying the time with people I’m around.
Day 7 (11/27) Sunday: Today I finished strong! My husband and I spent my last day of Thanksgiving break watching football with our friends. Again, I noticed the crazy amount of times everyone checked their phones and I have to admit that I checked mine too for no apparent reason.
While moments of this challenge were frustrating, I feel this challenge was much needed for me to recharge. It made me realize why people who are on social media constantly complain about people being on their phones constantly. I plan on doing this again during my Christmas break when I can have more time to read and spend time with my family and friends. Would you ever considering unplugging?