I've taken to giving myself little "unplug" challenges lately. It feels silly. They're small. It's things like, "Get to the end of the next block without checking your phone." "Don't check Twitter for an hour." "No email until you've gotten out of bed and brushed your teeth." I usually fail. Or if I succeed, it's very difficult.
In the past, I've made "disconnecting" a New Year's Resolution and a Goal and an Intention, and it's just really fucking hard. It's embarrassing how hard it is. It feels silly to even want to disconnect sometimes. Isn't this the future? Isn't there something magical about connecting to strangers and friends on the internet? Having the world at your fingertips?
I work in tech. I'm active on social media. I love the internet. I'm around technology, "connecting" (and yes, sometimes Actually Connecting) to people all the time. It's amazing how much of my day is spent staring at a glowing screen, my fingers micro-moving across whatever keyboard I'm on. Pushing the pain of what's probably some sort of RSI or carpal tunnel or worse out of my head to just scroll a little farther, read one more article, type one more reply. Ignoring the actual world in front of me so I can connect to the world that's far away.
This weekend, I'm challenging myself (again) to a No Internet Saturday Morning and Afternoon. (NISMAA?) I'd love to say No Internet Saturday, but I know that's just setting myself up for failure. Last weekend, I said No Internet Saturday, and I was on my phone before I even got out of bed. So this time, I'm claiming the morning and afternoon as an internet-free zone. I can catch up with the world in the evening. But the morning and afternoon will be spent without the phone, social networks, and email that clutter my mind and tighten my fingers. Less multitasking, zero open tabs to flip through.
But how will I fill my time? Well, I'll be getting a flu shot, gardening, and purging my closet. Taking things to Goodwill, doing laundry, and unpacking the Target purchases from last weekend. Decorating the house for Halloween. Baking. There's so much I could be doing, it's no wonder I don't get anything done while I'm so distracted by technology. I'm looking forward to some forced dedicated time away from the screens, to make some progress on projects and goals I've been meaning to get to, and to move my body and mind in a way that doesn't involve typing, staring, or scanning.
How about you? Have you ever done a "technology sabbath" or an "unplugged challenge"? Do you think I'll make to 8pm without the internet?