Should I get rid of my iPhone?

Nathanael Yellis By Nathanael Yellis • Last Updated May 18, 2021

A few weeks ago, I deleted most of the programs on my phone. I stopped all incoming notifications and stopped "push" email service.

This change helped me see when I use my phone as an excuse to avoid thinking or real life. It's a very helpful indicator to have two steps to see if I have any new emails-- and it showed I'm addicted to the new email dopamine fix.

Brad Feld, noted software VC, is going through a similar transformation. He says his phone is no longer working for him:

I don’t miss my iPhone at all. It sits in my pocket most of the time. Every now and then I hop on a phone call and do a conference call with MobileDay. I used it for a map. I checked my calendar a few times. Yesterday, it occurred to me that I was much more mentally engaged throughout the day in the stuff going on...

This started after he declared a vacation week phone free, and then kept part of that resolution into his normal life--using the phone only as a phone.

Brad used the phrase "magic peace" to describe what emerges when he's not on his phone all day.

The transformation has been slower and not quite magical for me. After all, I'm still on email a dozen times a day on my phone. But being present means not glancing at a small screen all the time.

Maybe it's time to use a sharp, fast, light computer, and a dumb phone.

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