A phenomenon has taken place on this planet that simply baffles my mind. This phenomenon is not exclusively American. I have traveled quite a bit, as I practice Muay Thai in Asia and see it everywhere I go.
People are literally addicted to their cell phones. It drives me crazy.
People walk into you, or cut you off all the time. The worst part is they either don’t realize they have done so, or just don’t care.
I swear the next generation of Homo Sapiens will be crossed-eyed with one arm longer than the other, and a gigantic over-developed thumb.
A recent trip through the airport was a frustrating experience for me. People walking toward their gate were all walking with their heads buried in their phones. It was like walking through an obstacle course. You have to have the footwork of a professional Muay Thai fighter, just to survive.
When I arrived at my gate, everyone had their phones out, and were preoccupied with them.
I was a bit early for my plane so I went to the bar to grab a drink. I have always enjoyed meeting people from all over the world in airport lounges. Not any more… to a person, everyone was buried in their phones while sitting at the bar. Even the bartender, between serving customers, picked up her phone and started scrolling away.
This happens everywhere I go. I went to the gym the other day after Muay Thai training, and there was a guy sitting on the machine I wanted to use… you guessed it, staring at his phone for 20 minutes. If you can Facebook while you are working out, your workout might not be all that hard.
I was at a concert recently and everyone around me was recording the concert on their phones, completely missing the concert itself.
Another time, I was trying to watch some May Thai fights in Utah, but couldn’t see because the person in front of me had their phone in the air, recording them.
I took my wife and son to Thailand last year. When taking a break form Muay Thai training, we were on the most beautiful beach in the world, I looked over at my wife and saw her scrolling through her Facebook feed.
That was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me.
I don’t carry my phone any more. I got rid of it. I still have a phone and use it when I need it, but if I don’t answer your call or text for a few days, it’s because I didn’t see it. It’s not that I don’t care… wait, actually it is. Being in contact with people via a cell phone is really not all that high on my priority list these days.
Some of the things that have surpassed it are; sunsets, sunrises, trees, water, people watching, etc. You know… the world around me.
I honestly feel free. My wife gets frustrated with me sometimes because I don’t readily take her call, but I’m OK with that. The world is going on out there, and I am part of it.
If she wants to go out somewhere, I insist that she leave her phone behind. I want to spend time with her… not the back of her phone. Unfortunately for her, she has to spend time with me… just me.
There are some pitfalls to leaving technology behind.
I sometimes get lost because I don’t have my GPS system, and I’m OK with that as well. I eventually find my way, and have stumbled upon some other awesome places by accident.
I don’t have much of a library of pictures from my travels, but I have some amazing memories.
I highly recommend everyone give it a try for just one week. Leave your phone at home. Check it in the morning and before you go to bed at night in the event of an emergency, but leave it by your bed when you leave. You will be amazed at how liberating it is.
The world is going on out there… be a part of it.