Now that the clocks have gone forward and the days are getting longer I'm starting to plan some holiday and adventures for the spring and summer.
For me, one of the joys of taking breaks and getting outside is switching off from technology and all of the distractions and interruptions that I allow it to push at me. But it's difficult. Because I, like many people, convince myself that I need to have my iPhone with me because in an emergency people might need to get hold of me, or I may need to call for help or assistance.
So I used to take the iPhone with me in a back pocket. But every so often I'd find myself holding it, just holding it. What could be the problem? I'm not looking at it am I? It's just here in my hand in case.
And then, when the pace of my walking slowed down, or I sat to rest, or something happened to make me need to wait for someone else, then I would find myself just passing the time by checking. An instagram post, just the one, what's the harm?
Twitter, email... I was back in the virtual (unreal) world again. Nothing had changed.
I didn't always have the willpower. I didn't feel I could just turn it off or leave it. And I'm betting you, dear reader, may feel the same.
I failed again and again, each time feeling more ridiculous that I couldn't change my distraction habits.
So instead of changing them I threw the toy out of the pram.
The picture at the top of this post is my holiday and adventure mobile. It's a beauty isn't it?
The Samsung GTE 1080i makes calls. It can text. It has a game on it and an alarm. It lasts days and days on standby and months when switched off.
This phone comes with me on holidays and adventures. My wife has the number as does my Mum. If you need to get hold of me when I'm on holiday, being mindful of where I am, just enjoying the outdoors, the kids, dogs, family, friends or simply looking up at clouds, you're welcome to give me a call. Just find out the phone number of the two people who have it and the persuade them to give you the number. If this seems like too much hard work, you're probably right, so I'd suggest that whatever it is you need to talk to me about can probably wait a wee while.
The phone also protects me from myself. I can't use it to do anything except call and text. Because I know this already I find I have no need to even consider using it as a distraction tool. And this frees me up to be present and mindful without too much effort.
I've found that once I'm in holiday mode and turn off the iPhone and just take the one penny phone out, I immediately feel lighter and happier. I feel free.
So I'd urge you to do the same. Sadly my phone cost me one penny, with a £10 top up, but is now discontinued. But you could pick up one of these for only £9.47.
If this resonates with you, or you have tips you use to be more mindful on holidays and adventures, either leave a comment or find my wife or mum to ask them to give you my number and leave me a voicemail on my one penny phone.