I just spent a week in a beautiful part of the UK – the New Forest. This was our fourth visit to the same holiday park. We love it. It’s peaceful, idyllic, picture postcard perfect.
It’s three years since we were last in the area, however. On this particular occasion, I noticed something I had never noticed before. The only wifi available was in the main reception of the clubhouse and it was very weak. Mobile signal was virtually non existent.
Occasionally when we ventured out, we might pick up a little bit of 3G – enough to download some emails, perhaps, but otherwise we were lucky if we could send a text or receive a call. It seems like much of the New Forest is a virtual black hole.
Why did I not know this from my previous three trips there? What has happened to me during the last three years which means that I have become so reliant on my ability to remain constantly connected?
Three years ago I didn’t blog. I was on Facebook, but not Twitter or Google+ and I didn’t rely on my phone in order to check my emails. Now I have a smart phone and I use it for accessing all my social media and emails. It has become an essential part of my life – my crux.
It seems that I am reliant on my ability to stay constantly connected and take it for granted that I will always be able to do so. Having a week without this ability was…strange.
Being able to just about keep up to date with my emails was enough (you can’t go completely AWOL when you work for yourself). As for the rest, I found I didn’t mind it so much once I was resigned to the fact. Surprise, surprise, I survived!
I don’t know what I missed on my social media channels, but there is nothing I can do about that. It’s kind of refreshing in a way, like I’ve re-calibrated myself. Before we went away, I already realised that I spent too long on social media. This trip gave me a chance to reflect on that and how I will do things differently from now on. My challenge from here on is to find a new way to manage my social media, without letting it take over completely.
Have you ever found yourself in a similar situation? Do you think you rely too much on your smart phone? Could you cope without it?