Why and How I got Rid of My Cell Phone

As mentioned, I’m not a phone person.  5 years ago I downgraded back to a basic “dumb” phone because my slow, clunky smart phone was annoying me so much.  I survived without GPS, apps, instagram, no problem.  As my husband became more aware of cell phone radiation (it’s bad news, folks), he encouraged me to keep my phone in airplane mode whenever driving, when close to the kids, and at night.  So basically, all the time.  Often I’d forget about my  phone, leaving it in airplane mode for literally days before checking voicemail, because I text from my computer and texting is my preference.  Yes, the handful of people who called me were probably annoyed with me.  Sorry everyone.

We’ve been extra frugal the last few years to save for our house in the country.  The low hanging fruit is to cut out or cut down recurring bills.   That 40.00 phone bill for a dumb phone  started to gnaw at me. It taunted me. Sure, it’s just 40 bucks.   But 40 bucks EVERY month on something I loathe is just not acceptable.   I started to wonder if I could just get rid of the cell phone completely.  I researched for months.  I freaked out.  I got cold feet.  And then, one day, over a month ago, I held my breath and did it.

View from our soon-to-be-house in the country!

Here’s how I did it:

  1. I got a Google Voice number.
  2. I ported my cell phone number into Google Voice (costs 20 bucks) so I wouldn’t have to tell all my contacts to call a random Google Voice number.  When you do this, your cell phone plan is automatically cancelled.
  3. I got Google Hangouts so I could text, make and receive phone calls, and check voicemail all on my computer.
  4. I got a cheap 20 buck flip phone with prepaid minutes just to keep in my purse in case of emergencies.  I programmed my top 15 contacts into the phone.  I barely turn it on, but I DID have to dial 911 when I got in a car accident on the freeway, so I was super grateful to have it.
  5. I check my Google Hangouts a few times a day to catch any missed calls.  I try to call everyone back all at once- batching my  phone calls first thing in the morning to get it over with.  It’s amazing.
  6. Most people don’t even realize I don’t have a cell phone. What felt like such an epic decision was really no biggie.

So yeah, if you hate something enough, you can just cut it out of your life.  Decluttering isn’t just for kitchen gadgets and closets.  Is there anything you’re dying to cut out but afraid to?

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