Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Reflections.. on life and the psychological link to our cell phone.

This is VERY interesting! A week ago on my vacation my phone got splashed when I walked over one of those dancing fountains on the cruise I went on. It made it so the phone could no longer be charged. I was left unable to download or transfer any of the information on it and being that the new iPhone comes out tomorrow I decided to wait and use a temp phone instead of buying another iPhone that I would just have to update again in a week. The interesting thing is I am now without my "Teddy Bear" basically. I don't know if people are aware of how attached they are to their cell phones. Id say Im average level attached. Like I won't go online if Im with someone per say and I try not to text if Im with someone and If I must text I apologize for it. Id say thats medium weight attachment, not so attached I text without apology, but not so un attached I turn the phone off at dinner (How I feel I probably should be.) Its funny that I sleep with the phone next to me in bed and Im willing to bet most people my age or younger do the same thing. This isn't a conscious maneuver but needless to say ITS THERE like a teddy bear beside me in bed. Its an inarguable security blanket, diary, connection to the outside world, affirmation maker (though it shouldn't be), my history. My phone had five years of photos on it I think. The first photos on it were of me and my bf at the time in Santorini together on a vacation that was nice but also shitty as we were breaking up at the time and trying to figure out how to do it right... WHAT A BETTER WAY THEN TO GO TO HONEYMOON LAND SANTORINI and then FOLSOM EUROPE IN BERLIN TOGETHER?!? We tried... If I had just gotten the new iPhone without having to clear the phone I would have transferred the information from one phone to the other, with no break, like I had for years continuing the attachment and "sticker book" of the past five years. Now though that I can't there is this very interesting psychological "break" and I think its REALLY GOOD that it happened and I really strongly suggest you do the same despite how scary it seems. Im not even talking about just the photos because Im actually hesitant to transfer the contacts as I like the idea of just having the numbers of the people I ACTUALLY CALL instead of this giant black book of names like "Madrid Brazil Matt" and "Jimmy Juice". I feel like were not aware of the psychological attachment we have with saving all this information and having it for quick reference at our finger tips! I haven't dated anyone seriously since I broke up with my last bf four or five years ago. In all honesty part of me wonders if I just never had the psychic break because I had hundreds of photos of us together on the phone. I know that may sound like its pushing it a little but I really feel like Ive opened a "new" chapter of my life now that this phone and all its memories are over. Luckily I got the information transferred to a zip drive so I still have all the photos, which was extraordinary important to me as it was an extremely important five years in my life and this documented the entire process. Its also funny that the phone got splashed basically in the same place where it started, on a boat in Santorini. I feel like there are no "accidents" (besides someone being hit by a drunk driver etc) and wonder if this was my way of making the break by "accidentally" walking over the fountain and having it get splashed and thus completing the cycle psychologically speaking... Either way Im really happy I did. I feel like I have room for "new" and really needed it frankly. Its nice to know the past is safely stored, but in my hand, and more importantly in my head, is the future.


Mike Mayer said...

awesome insight, dave!

The information we encounter each day has a way of constituting ourselves at a very deep level. But I think it's the meaning we've attached to that information that is the deeper cause.

How we manage this information, our relationship to it and the meaning we attach, all help form our being, not just only for other people, but for ourselves. Deep-down, inside.

I don't know a word or phrase encompassing this—but I'd summarize like this: we are what we think and what we think is largely triggered by what we interact with…the people, attitudes, media, devices and so on...but at the root, it's really what we think or the significance that we attach to stuff we interact with that effects us.

Facebook is a good example. Fb's stream is nothing more than an endless flow of triggers. Making us present to all sorts of stuff. Just one post from that painful high asshole and suddenly we're rocketed back to a time and place that isn't where we want to be...

But it isn't Facebook's fault, it isn't the post's fault and it isn't your classmate's fault...

I think its awesome that folks are starting to become conscious of this mechanism...we can only manage it if we become aware of it.

I'll be curious if you ever feel like this insight "wears off". I'm not sure that we can get aware from the stuff we feel repressed by simply by eradicating it. It's sort of like a drunk removing the alcohol from their home. They might become a dry drunk, but they're still a drunk. I think deeper resolution is possible, but it takes work. Its not hard work, but just conscious work.

I'm, not one for metaphysical stuff. So for me, my guess is that losing one's phone is probably escapism. But escapism is great. Like drugs and partying. But in the longterm, its better not to confuse which is real and which is the escape.

David Mason said...

Great feedback Mike, I think thats great insight.

Rico said...

My cell is so basic and cheap it does not take photos. I am actually horrified when people my age 50-60s are looking at their phone while having dinner or riding in the car with me. Younger kids during holidays with family do not even visit as they are checking the phone. Why does everyone want to star in their own reality show? I want your attention in your company not a world filled with Attention deficit phone clones.