As I mentioned, I ordered How to Break Up with Your Phone in an impulsive flurry the other day. The title — and its promise — was just too good for me to ignore.
(I am going to be sad if it was just a marketing ploy and is not chock full of practical tips and a real plan, and I will let you all know so you don’t make the same mistake if that turns out to be the case!).
When I texted Josh that I had ordered this book (because trust me, no one wishes for this breakup more than my beloved husband), he texted back*:
You know what? I HATE EMAIL ON MY PHONE. For several reasons:
1) It’s distracting (obviously). It’s very hard NOT to read something once it’s popped up and has some interest.
2) I feel compelled to check work email when I’m off even though really I do not need to (we have a coverage system for that). Then I find out someone needs something and worry about it / end up doing work on my day off that wasn’t really necessary.
3) It’s incredibly annoying to respond on email, which means a lot of times they are read but then left to fester, which means I am looking at the same things MULTIPLE TIMES instead of once, creating a lot of brain clutter that didn’t need to exist in the first place because IF IT WAS THAT URGENT, it wouldn’t have been an email.
Touch It Once – maybe not always practical advice, but I certainly don’t need to open up a preschool bday party invite 3 separate times before responding, entering it into my calendar, and ordering a gift.
I think that Josh is right – I predict Catherine Price (the author of the book) will tell you to take email off of your phone. And you know what? That is an unbelievably smart idea, whether she suggests it or not. I’m going to do it now even before I read the book. As soon as I figure out how . . . after all, I can always put them back. But I’d like to see if getting rid of the option to check (other than opening a browser window to do it, which is much more annoying) will force me to corral email-reading back to where it belong: on the computer when I actually have time/energy to respond. Wish me luck!
* Yes, I get the irony. But the truth is he kind of HAS broken up with his phone. Other than the occasional text reply sent to me often an hour or more after I’ve texted him.