I Tried to Quit My Smartphone Addiction and (Spoiler Alert) Failed Miserably

I need rehab. Actual, real-life, smartphone rehab. Listen, I knew I was addicted to my smartphone before I tried to go smartphone-free for one week, but I didn’t know how addicted I was. Now that I know, I’m actually scared for myself and, dare I say, society as a whole.

Shortly after my daughter was born, I actually attempted this digital detox song and dance. Why? I caught myself checking my phone while I was driving my precious cargo in the car. I felt guilty whenever she saw me scrolling during playtime. I found myself taking drastic measures like actually hiding my phone just to stay in the present moment. I started to think that I had a real problem. Turns out that I do.

According to my phone’s data, I spend an average of four hours and 23 minutes on my phone per day! It’s clear that I need to get clean. So, I decided to take on the difficult, but not impossible, task of turning off all of my cellular data and WiFi dialing. I was determined to use my phone as 1998 intended – make calls, take calls, and maybe store a photo here and there. I want to be clear: this meant no music, no Google Maps, no email, no social media, no apps, nothing for one whole week!

Let me just tell you that this seemingly innocent experiment made with the intention of being more present in those picture-perfect moments (as opposed to ruining them by taking actual pictures) really opened my eyes to the severity of my smartphone addiction.

My name is Jen, and I am a smartphone addict. Here’s my (attempted) recovery story.

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