I did an experiment in February. I wanted to break my routines. For the last decade, I believe I have probably had at least one beer every day. It became routine. It took up time. Maybe it made me lazy when I could have been working on something. Although I do not classify myself as a lazy person, I wanted to know if there was more I could be doing instead of sitting on the couch having a brew.
There was a lot of personal growth over the last few years. I advanced in my career that moved us across the country twice, gone back to school full-time, cultivated a lifestyle of positivity, go to the gym a few times a week, launched a creative blog that I update weekly, curate and publish weekly playlists for emerging artists, and still actively perform music. Sounds like a lot, but maybe there is more.
By checking social media, scrolling through thousands of pictures for extended periods of time, sitting on the couch and enjoying an adult beverage, I wondered how that was adding anything positive to my life. I was looking for a reset and February seemed to be a perfect time. My birthday is January 31st, so figured I could go out with a bang on my birthday and start fresh on February 1st.
Breaking routines and mental queues is not easy, but I accomplished it. I went a full month with no social media, no credit cards and (strike up the band) no alcohol of any kind. Yikes. It was not as hard as I thought or seems. I found myself on my days off and weekends adventuring around Nashville a little bit more, taking up new hobbies, finding new restaurants and cafes instead of going to the local dive.
It was a great reset. I read more. I took up rock climbing. I took more walks and explored the neighborhood. I took my dogs out more. I engaged in more conversations and even forgot my phone twice when I went to work. My credit score went up, and I got caught up on some minor debts that I wanted to pay off. I saved a bunch of money that I would have used to grab some beer and paid off most of my Discover card. Unplugging was refreshing.
We are in March now, and I have noticed that a lot of the changes have impacted my routines. Since my February detox, I am more aware of how often I pick up my phone and check it for no reason at all. I have found myself in March just standing with my phone and wondering why I even picked it up. Going to the fridge and grabbing a beer or even buying beer isn't top of mind (for the most part - I love beer). It is interesting to see how a few minor changes can open your eyes and that is what I was looking to do in February.
I celebrated with friends on March 1st and went back to the bar. It was fun, and I do love having drinks with friends, sharing posts and photos and seeing less debt when I open up my financial apps. Now I am more conscience about how many times I am checking my phone. I feel I notice myself doing it less, reminding myself to put the phone down and look up to see the awesomeness that is going on around me.
Now, who wants to grab a beer?
Breaking and changing habits can be hard. If you want to see how many times you check your phone every day, download this app Checky. It may blow your mind.