Going unplugged (sort of)

Categories: Education, Life, Science & Tech
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:computer: Two news articles this past week caught my attention. The first was on the NPR website about how a University declares a week without social media. I don’t do twitter, for various reasons. But I have found myself repeatedly logging in to various forums or social sites throughout the day when I apparently have nothing better to do. Except I always have something better to do. I have a whole list of things I need to be doing.

So this week I decided I’m not logging into any of them. I did log into facebook one evening because I hadn’t heard back through email from someone I’d asked a question of a few days earlier and I wanted to see if they’d been active online. They had been. They just weren’t replying to my email. I haven’t been logging into instant messengers either.

And it’s been interesting what I’ve found to fill my time. I finally started compiling all the emails Brett and I have sent each other since we met. That’s almost five years worth of emails at this point. I’m one month in and already over 40 pages of writing. Compiling all the emails, instant messages, and other notes in to one document to print as a book is a project we’ve been talking about for a while. So now it’s started.

The most interesting thing for me is how often I had to stop myself on Monday, the first day, from just clicking over to the forums when I was bored. That day was hard. By Wednesday it was much easier to instead put together some charts I needed to and to pull up the letter I need to write for the college and get out the Conference edition of the Ensign to finish reading it before the end of the month. I’ve been able to get things done. And it’s been nice, if not a little weird to realize how often I was clicking over.

The second article was in the BBC titled “How to disconnect from your online life.” I particularly enjoyed this quote:

If we can’t live in the moment without tweeting about it, or broadcasting all of our thoughts to our 2,000 Facebook friends, are we in danger of losing our sense of identity?

Brett and I get a sad twisted kick out of the people we know who are tweeting or updating facebook while they are on dates or on their honeymoon or any other place where they should really be in the moment instead of on the internet.

Now, obviously, I haven’t given up all technology this week. I’m still emailing. I’m still blogging. I’m still reading my news headlines (but I have organized a lot of those so I’m not reading all of them every day too). And I will use forums and such as needed after this week. But I’m making an effort to be in the moment and in the flesh more. And I think that’s good to do. I am, after all a real life person in the flesh.

6 shared thoughts about Going unplugged (sort of)

  1. Giggle

    I’m definitely more productive when I’m not connected to an IV of chat or Twitter or Facebook. I really ought to unplug more often.

    It’s just so quiet . . .

  2. Heidi Aphrodite says:

    I try to stay off my computer on weekends…my weakness is a silly pixel-tastic game that I LOVE playing, so I limit myself to one game a day on weekends unless I’m not feeling well and incapable of doing something more productive. It is nice to be able to focus on something besides the intertubes (I call it internet-induced ADD), but I sometimes have to talk myself into doing something productive that doesn’t involve computers.

    You are a great example. 🙂

  3. Giggles says:

    Several years ago I would get the absolute worst migraines when I would fast from food and water. So I decided that on Fast Sunday I would fast from technology. No computer or TV at all. Those were very peaceful Sundays.

    I wonder if anyone’s ever done a study on what could be called internet-induced ADD. With so much at our fingertips all the time, it’s often hard to focus on just one thing. But it’s nice when you can. I know they’ve been doing studies on internet-induced narcissism. Or maybe it’s just the internet that allows the narcissistic tendencies that are already there to come out more easily.

    For example, this afternoon instead of spending hours on facebook and feeling like a blob afterward, I’ve been preparing dinner. And it’s going to be a super yummy dinner too. So now I feel productive and not blob-ish.

  4. Giggles says:

    And just as a follow-up.

    Dinner tonight was:
    – homemade flat bread
    – cantaloupe
    – kiwis
    – apples
    – grapes
    – broccoli
    – carrots
    – cheese cubes
    – ranch dressing or homemade strawberry jam for dipping/spreading.


  5. Giggles says:

    And an article about the end of the ban at the university – NPR – Pa. University Bans Facebook, Twitter for a Week.

    I thought this quote was especially thought provoking:
    “Why are we posting on Facebook, why are we sharing, why are we disclosing in this way and for what purpose? Many people are already in the habit of, ‘I have to go post to Facebook, I have to go see what’s happening, I have to update my status.’ Why? You don’t have to.”

  6. Pingback, 15 March 2011 at 10:19 pm
    Unplugged – The follow-up | Random Giggles

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