Yep. You read that title correctly. Last week I ended my affair. I had an affair with my cell phone. I was cheating on my life, my husband, and my kids with my phone. It all ended last Monday.
For the past several years I have noticed that my cell phone and I were becoming closer and closer. It literally morphed into a permanent fixture on my body. I was never without it. Last week I had the opportunity to attend Making Things Happen Conference in Chapel Hill, NC. It was incredible! Two days of focusing on myself, my dreams, my calling, MEEEEEEEEE! Part of the conference requires that you step away from your cell phone during the day. At night you were allowed to have your phone, but lucky me, my charger wouldn’t work in the plug beside my bed. It lived a lonely night on the hotel desk far from my reach.
Very quickly in the conference I had a revelation of priorities in my life. They were not in alignment with my dreams. If I was going to do anything to pursue my calling, then I needed to make some adjustments in my priorities. First adjustment… admitting I was addicted to my phone. Throughout my conference time I realized I had become lazy over the last couple of years. I had put my dreams on the back burner and believed they weren’t able to be achieved in the here and now. With that lie, I replaced passionate pursuit of Christ for laziness. Anything that was able to help me be lazy became a priority. Essentially, my addiction was born from this.
I knew that I needed to make some drastic measures in my life to eliminate this affair. Immediately after returning home, I purchased a small bedside clock. I moved my phone charger to a media dresser on the other side of my room, and I gave myself restrictions. The first night felt incredible! I was pumped! I was energetic! This is going to be awesome! Then night two crept up. I felt alone. Incomplete. Did I lose an arm? Seriously, something wasn’t right. I mentioned this to my husband and he reminded me that I was changing my habits and it would take a while to adjust.
We live in a world of patterns. We conduct our lives in patterns. I have to change some of my patterns so that I can live the life Christ has called me to. This is an ongoing journey. I still have several weeks of re-adjusting this small pattern before a new pattern of not being addicted to my cell phone appears. It will be easy to step back into the same old habits, but I am making a conscious decision everyday to not fall victim to the old Pam.
Are you struggling with some priorities in your life? Do you have an addiction to your cell phone? Addiction to Social Media? Laziness? Commit to making small baby steps to change patterns. SMALL STEPS. My first step was to purchase a bedside clock. Then I moved the charger to another area of my house. Finally I made a restriction to put my phone away at 10 pm every night.
Here are a few tips to changing your patterns:
- Write out small action steps that can help to change a habit. Be clear and give yourself deadlines.
- Make a commitment to be consistent with your steps for at least a month.
- Ask a close friend or spouse to help with accountability.
- If you mess up, don’t start over, just keep going. WE CAN DO THIS!
Three days after I made this vow to myself, my oldest randomly says to me, “Mom, you talk on your phone a lot.” I asked “what do you mean?” (I don’t prefer to talk at all). He explained that I am always talking or texting with other people and he just wants me to play. ARROW IN THE HEART! I said, “I know buddy and Mommy is sorry and is going to change that”. Friends, when I am 80 years old, it will not matter how much time I spent on my cell phone. It will matter how much time my son enjoyed with his mother. Last week, I ended my affair. I will no longer cheat on myself, my husband, or my kids.