Firstly for those unfamiliar with the term “phubbing”, it is a comination of ‘phone’ and ‘snubbing’, therefore the ‘phub’ is to tune someone out whilst tapping away on your phone, oblivious to your surroundings.
Phone’s have taken over our lives whether we like it or not. They are now so ‘smart’ that they basically provide us with a little computer to drag around in our handbags all day long. Nobody is unreachable anymore, and most of us are never much more than an arms length away from our phones at all times.
I don’t leave the house without my phone, and if I accidentally do, I immediately feel a sense of panic. What if I need to call someone? What if they need to call me? What if I get lost and need Google maps? What if I need to ask Google something urgently? (For the record, most of these things rarely happen.)
I even have a neat little pouch on the handle of my daughters pram that I can slot my phone into so it’s, quite literally, ‘handy’. I can text and reply to emails on the go as I walk with her. #multitasker. #mumlife. #maybeIshouldgetalife…
The other day my little girl’s chubby 11-month-old hands picked up my phone with a fascination she usually reserves for books, or Tupperware. Instinctively she touched the screen to make it come alive. I took it off her and she squealed with indignation until I quickly replaced the phone with a Tupperware lid and she was happy again.
It gave me pause to think about my own phone grabbing hands and the frequency with which I live my life online. Email, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Whatsapp etc, are now just a part of my everyday background noise. I have massive FOMO all the time that something will ‘happen’ online and I won’t see it. Note to self; nothing much ever happens online unless you really like to see pictures of other people’s food choices.
When my daughter does something cute I quickly grab for my phone to take a photo or video instead of just looking at her and enjoying her being cute. I’m so obsessed with ‘capturing moments’ that I’m missing being in them.
My husband and I have an enforced ‘phone blackout’ period from 6pm-8pm, so that we can enjoy a couple of hours after the baby goes to bed to talk about our day and eat dinner together without the distraction of our phones. So maybe it’s time for some more of these ‘blackout’ periods throughout the day, so that not looking at my phone becomes my new habit.
So apologies if I’m slow getting back to people from now on. I’ll be at the playground on the swings if you need to contact me urgently 😉