When I started my most recent position and told my manager I didn’t have work email on my phone, he was speechless. I joked that work doesn’t pay for my phone, so why would I put email on it? He offered to have work pay for my phone. I declined.
Last week a client who I’m good friends with asked me if I was having any issues with meetings synchronizing to my phone. When I told him I don’t have work email on my phone, he looked at me confused. “What do you do, go home and log on with your laptop?” I told him. For the rest of the day, every time he walked past my desk he shook his head in disbelief.
My work stays at work. My boundaries are defined. And my employer and clients are better off because of it.
I don’t want to have a little mail icon on my phone with a badge proclaiming unread email counts. I don’t ever want to casually browse work emails from my sofa because I’m bored. The modern “always on” mentality towards work leaves people drained and overwhelmed.
Perhaps I’m the exception to the rule, but I spend much of my time outside of work reading books, building websites, thinking of interesting business ideas, learning about new technologies, tinkering, and hacking. Building those skills and that passion outside of work is far more important than replying to emails that can wait until tomorrow. Unplugging completely allows me to travel farther in other directions.
What’s your relationship with your smartphone?