A day without the internet

It’s a Friday afternoon, and after a very long week, I want to completely unwind for the weekend. I consider my options. Go out to eat, or drinks at a bar, even go for a walk if the weather permits; the usual and all good options but I want something more. Maybe less.

I realize it’s been a very long time since I have spent a whole day away from my devices and the internet. I quickly go over a mental checklist of what I’ve got planned for the weekend. Sunday might not work, I’ve got a virtual podcast meeting, but I can do a device-free Saturday. I don’t commit to the idea just yet but it sounds so nice to be able to break up with the internet for a full day, to get away.

By the time I regain half-consciousness Saturday morning, I know I’m going to spend the day unplugged. It feels so right. My alarm goes off shortly after and I turn off my phone, turn off my iPad, close my laptop, grab my work laptop bag, and I put it all in a box, and tape it shut.

I feel relieved.


Excuses are just that, excuses; first lesson. That Saturday, I had plans to work on my newsletter and write a blog post. I felt anxious: How am I going to do any of that without my laptop and access to the Internet? I knew there had to be a way and I found it to be a very simple solution: A pen and paper. Just like that, I began drafting a blog post- this blog post- on a piece of paper. The idea that we need a digital device or the internet to be productive is not always necessarily true. It’s mostly an excuse. Sure, it is more convenient to be able to type than write things down manually then type it out, but the ability to unplug, disconnect, and still get work done is a possibility. It’s the art of applying pen to paper. If I choose to, I can draft all my blog posts, newsletters, and so forth on a piece of paper. In doing so, I decrease the time I spend online while still getting work done. Any time spent offline is less time spent online; the simplest way of looking at digital well-being.

a draft of this blog post

There’s so much time in the day. When those in-between moments we rush to fill with the digital clutter become available, time starts to feel infinite. The morning feels longer. The afternoon drags on. The evening goes on evermore slowly. Suddenly time is the most apparent thing in the world, in your face, and it passes ever so slowly and painfully, so obvious you wonder why you never noticed it, all the while it laughs victoriously at you: Notice me now?!? Whenever I take away the option, and there is no quick glance at my phone, or checking my email once more just in case, or running to Google to look up the random things that come to mind, all that time accumulates. I have to slow down to keep up with time. I get so much done that Saturday.

Going offline for a day, or more, is a delicious treat. It’s a vacation without a vacation. Best of all it’s free and all it requires is you pack up your devices and put them away for the day. Then you do whatever you want knowing that for that day nothing online will be of matter to you. It cannot be of matter to you. You can’t reach it, thus, it cannot reach you. The moment I put the box of devices away, I felt freed. When I can’t reach the online spaces, I know I am unreachable to it: A relief. I don’t plan anything specific that day but good things happen anyway: productive, interesting, totally fun things. That’s the beauty of disconnecting from the mindless, yet deliciously addictive digital space: It forces you to do something, anything.

Until next time,

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