Phones, assumptions and expectations

I’m 16 years old. I strongly dislike my phone. You never thought you’d ever hear those two sentences from the same person, did you?

I started feeling like this a few years back. My parents decided I couldn’t charge my phone at night, and consequently my phone died a lot during the day. After a while, I stopped missing it. Even if I have it with me, I don’t use it anymore. Last year, I challenged myself to put away my phone for a month, and my primary conclusion was that most inconvience caused by not having a phone, is imposed by the expectations and assumptions of other people.

I hate the fact that I’m expected to always be available for everyone. All it takes is one tap: ping. It’s annoying. Every time I’m trying to actually get something done, my phone just keeps going beep boop ping pong. It’s like someone is tapping my shoulder every few minutes. “Can I have your attention please?” My concentration is already severly fractured. I don’t want to know that you’ve tagged me, I don’t feel like sending selfies back and forth and I don’t care that some artist released a new album. I just want to get my shit done.

Phones are supposed to be tools. Tools should never, ever, ever, have control over us. We’re supposed to be the master of our tools, not the other way around.

That’s easily solved tho. My phone is always on silent. However, people still expect me read and reply instantly. That’s what bothers me: the fucking social pressure to participate.

Furthermore, everyone assumes you to have and always carry a phone with you. Oh yes, let’s do a Kahoot! Or some other activity requiring a phone. Or just scan this QR code and you’ll be done. Or how about we put the schedule on a mobile app? You’ll need a smartphone to get a DigiD too, which is needed to access your medical records, apply for vaccines, and pay your taxes. Sooner or later you’ll need to setup mobile banking as well, because the device we use for signing into the online banking portal doesn’t have replaceable batteries and we won’t give you a replacement when it eventually dies.

It’s the small things, the assumptions and expectations.
And it’s so annoying.