My smartphone isn’t an actual attachment of my body, but it’s close.
It seems like I’m always having someone make some comment about the fact that I’m always on my phone. It’s true, I use it a lot but I believe that it’s a perfectly defendable position.
I’ve always wanted to give a speech called What If Thomas Edison Had A Smartphone because I’ve come to the conclusion that when Steve Jobs put our lives in our pockets, he gave us the tools be more creative, more productive and more connected than any time in human history. With all of this power, why wouldn’t I take full advantage? I mean every tool that every personal development expert has ever recommended is at my fingertips. Consider:
1. I always have my calendar.
I am a huge believer that what gets scheduled gets done therefore I make sure that everything I need to complete every day is scheduled on my calendar. Having used every tool at one point or another, I’ve never used on as good as Google Calendar. Because it syncs between multiple devices, I always have my calendar.
2. I can always take notes.
David Allen wrote that our brain is for having ideas, not storing them and it’s taken me years to embrace taking notes but now that I have, I always use my phone. Evernote is awesome but for my money, Google Keep is the best application you’re not using. It can work for simple notes, task lists, sketches, voice notes, the list goes on and on. Every time an idea hits me, Keep is where it goes until I can process it.
3. I can always find the answer
This is probably first on most people’s list, but having access to the internet and the powers of Google’s search engine means that I don’t have to know everything, I just have to be able to look it up. I almost feel bad that my mom spent all of that money on that set of encyclopedias when everything I need is at my fingertips.
4. I’m never out of reach
This may be a debatable point. Some would argue that constantly being available isn’t a positive, but for those of us grinding, the idea of missing an important call, text or email is a nightmare. I will agree with my critics that not every call, text or email is important, but having access and being able to decide gives me power. By utilizing folders and batching how I deal with email, I’m in control making my phone work for me rather than being a slave to it.
5. There are no wasted moments
How do I find time to read a book a week, follow 100 blogs and constantly read relevant articles? I carry a library, newsstand and magazine rack in my pocket. If I’m stopped by a train, I can read. While waiting for a meeting to start, I can read, doctor’s office waiting room? Yep, I can read and not just the outdated People Magazine. I use Aldiko for books, BlogLovin’ for blogs and Flipboard and StumbledUpon for articles. I have the tools to educate myself and I will use them.
I will not defend Pokemon, Candy Crush or other time wasting games, but I find tremendous value in the tools my phone makes available to me and I have no problem defending my use of them.
What do you think?