Last post, I declared my love for my smartphone. We didn’t always have such a healthy, functional, and respectful relationship. In fact, it wasn’t until I set very firm boundaries that I learned to love, respect, and appreciate all the good my smartphone brings to my life: Turning my smartphone into a dumb phone remains a popular post. I’m glad I didn’t believe the lies, and there are a lot of lies; “you need social media,” “you need a smartphone,” “you need to be online,” lies, lies, lies. The truth is there are no rules, only consequences.(more…)
New year, better problems
(Since I don’t listen, let me reframe.)
It’s a dangerous trap, the comfort of misery. You can spend a lifetime on the same problem; getting used to it, becoming addicted even- the complaining, the exasperated sighs, the misery. “People let the same problem make them miserable for years when they could just say, So what. That’s one of my favorite things to say. So what.” But the devil you know, and it is true.
Because it shouldn’t be that difficult right- if I say I don’t want to spend too much time online, it’s a waste of my time, it’s lonely, isolating, boring- to get offline? But it’s easier to complain about the problems of Tinder from the comfort of my couch than to get dressed, go out, and awkwardly flirt with someone who didn’t show initial interest by swiping left/right. It’s a lot of work; this reality of ours. You are safe online; your ego is safe, and plenty of fish to fill up on. A lot can go wrong in real life. After all the effort it took to show up, you might not find a single person to try your luck with- you don’t run out of people on dating apps, but a venue can hold only so many people. Reality is unpredictable; indifferent to your efforts. Which brings me back to an important consideration, so what?(more…)
Another year (mostly) spent offline
2022 beat my ass. I aged ten years in two weeks, what did you accomplish? Getting offline won’t save you from yourself, that’s lesson one. Nothing will save your from yourself, except maybe death, but then it won’t matter anyway. In the meantime, getting (mostly) offline has made life much better. Compared to what? I can’t say, but it feels better. It is truly the gift that keeps on giving and I’m excited to see where this journey, this little adventure of mine, will take me. There is no looking back now.(more…)
Tips, tools, tricks for life unplugged
On a more practical, and less preachy, note, I wanted to share a list of tips, tools, and tricks I have used in the past and still use to unplug, disconnect, and spend more time offline. It is by no means an exhaustive list, and it might not be for everyone, everywhere, at all times, but it is what has worked for me, and I hope you find if some of it useful.
- Turn (almost all) notifications off. No buzz, beep, bloop sounds around here. Once I realized I am not that important and nobody would die because I missed their call or text, the burden lifted and I keep notifications to a minimum.
- Speaking of not being that important, just because I can be reached 24/7/365, does not mean I have to be reached 24/7/365. If I miss your call, I will call back. Texts can wait too. It’s a good mentality shift that helps me create a space between my phone and I.
The Apple Watch: Underestimated Tech for Digital Minimalists?￼
This is a guest post by Matt Jennings from matjen.com.
Over the last few months, I have been testing the Apple Watch as a tool for decreasing my reliance on my iPhone, and so far, it’s been a great success.
You see, as someone who tries to be mindful of my technology use, I’m always tinkering with ways to reduce my usage, without forgoing it entirely.
The problem is not the technology itself, but our use of it.
Our phones are designed in a way that is so addictive that we get sucked into the rabbit hole of social media, shiny apps, and endless web surfing.
By replacing my iPhone primarily with an Apple Watch (or, if not in the Apple eco system- one of these equally useful smartwatches.), I get the most essential functionalities of a smartphone, without the distraction.(more…)
Why I deleted my LinkedIn account
Note: I wrote this back in 2018 when I deleted my LinkedIn account. I wasn’t on any social media then, but I’ve been back on Instagram since September 2020.Update: I deleted Instagram again in 2021 and I haven’t been on social media since.
What do you do when an online platform intended for professional networking and growing your career turns into a nuisance to your everyday life?
You need to cut it.(more…)
A digital minimalist’s approach to social media management
This is a guest post by Matt Jennings from matjen.com.
As a digital minimalist, is it possible to ‘do social media’ without the constant connectivity that apps like Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and others enable? In this post, Matt is going to put forward the case that you can.(more…)
Radical digital declutter
Taking my own advice, I paid attention to what part of my digital life was causing me the most stress. Email was the number one offender. On a recent vacation, I experimented with life without email. For a week I didn’t check my email at all. It was simply amazing, glorious, freeing, delightful, exceptional…
Since I can’t completely opt-out of emails, I wanted to figure out a way to make email less painful. The solution? A radical declutter of my email and online accounts to minimize digital overwhelm.
Without further ado…(more…)
Is digital declutter for you?
Digital declutter is a very personal journey.
For some, it’s their email inbox that is cluttered and stressful. For others, it’s their desktop overflowing with files and documents.
Below are three ideas to determine if digital declutter is for you.(more…)
5 tips for reducing inbox clutter
Raise your hand if you have ever been personally victimized by an overflowing, cluttered, anxiety-inducing inbox…
Email, an abbreviation of “electronic mail,” was invented in the early 1970s by Ray Tomlinson as a personal side project. Since the first email sent by Tomlinson in 1971, email has ushered in an incredible new era of communication we now enjoy with billions of people all over the world sending and receiving emails every day. What Tomlinson, surely, did not anticipate back then was how ubiquitous, addictive and compulsive email would eventually become for its users. Tomlinson later said he had no notion whatsoever of what the ultimate impact would had.
How did an invention meant to serve as a speedy way for programmers and researchers to keep in touch, particularly for those who can’t be relied on to answer their phones, become a nuance to our daily lives?(more…)