Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Unplugged After Five

I love the internet.  I really do, and I bet you do too.  So many wonderful things, so much inspiration, so many great people, all at your fingertips at all hours of the day and night.  The internet provides me with oodles of inspiration and entertainment, and for that I am grateful.

However.  I think we’re all aware of the internet’s dark side, the way it can fill up your day in mysterious ways that leave you scratching your head and saying, “Did I really just spend three hours looking at photos on Flickr?”  Yes, yes, you did.  Because the internet is so good and so inspiring that it makes time pass effortlessly.  Which can be a good thing, for example, when you’re waiting at the airport for your ride.  But most of the time, an internet habit needs moderation or it will spin out of control.

The last two evenings have fallen into the out-of-control category for me.  In theory, I’m supposed to unplug for a while between work and my evening free time.  But I’m not doing a very good job at this, so I need an intervention.  Sometimes it’s not good enough to say, “I intend to do this.”  Sometimes we need something more along the lines of a S.M.A.R.T. goal (thanks, JD!) to help us reclaim our time.

Which brings me to the title of today’s post: Unplugged After Five.  This month, I’m going to declare two evenings a week as computer-free nights after 5 PM.  That means no Netflix, no blogging, no GOMI, no e-mail, no listening to podcasts.  It does mean books, cooking dinner, listening to CDs, lighting candles, yoga, journaling, and going to bed early.  It means more quiet, less chatter.

I’m all about rewards when I reach a goal.  This month’s reward, should I manage to unplug myself, is a few pairs of tights from We Love Colors.  I particularly like the mocha and spruce green colors.

Anybody else up for joining me in Unplugged After Five?  Yes?  There’s nothing ironic about using the internet to build a support group for your internet addiction, right?


  1. Haha! I love the idea but don't think I can do it because I do a lot of grading and work online in the evenings in addition to other fun interneting. I wish you well in breaking your addiction, though.

  2. Thanks! It's hard though--I love listening to podcasts while I'm cooking, but last night, at 5 PM I turned the computer off and picked out some CDs instead. Last week was a success with this little project, and we'll see how I do this week :-) I'm glad I started off small.