Being of a certain age, it did not seem that long ago when mobiles became necessary. My childhood was spent without one, we got our first computer /email address when I was in my early twenties and certainly social media hadn’t even been thought of.
But the world has changed and technology is very much a part of our lives. When I was setting my challenges, I knew that this one would be a tough one for me. I don’t watch TV particularly in World Cup season so that wasn’t a problem but to go without my PC, tablet and mobile? I didn’t trust myself to challenge myself for more than a day or to make it a regular occurance. I would surely be setting myself up to fail.
So when my laptop went into repair last Friday, I had no option to go without that. I looked at our calendar and knew that this would be the weekend for the challenge, unfortunately I have a piece of work that needs to be done each week on a Saturday morning so Sunday it was.
Must admit, Saturday was worse than usual, I filed all my emails, I was checking and reading every comment on Facebook, posting utter garbage on ‘all’ my accounts on twitter. Reading my own blogs as well as everyone elses! Updated my ‘About page’, the list went on, if I wasn’t on the phone I was on the ipad, or on the family computer. Antisocial or what? I was scared I was going to miss something important, crucial or worthy of retweeting. Already I was beginning to see the ridiculousness of this social media addiction of mine. It was worse than before you go on holiday – mainly because I like wifi wherever I go on holiday so I can still be online.
My challenge said a day… I guess that is 24 hours. What is a screen? Apart from the aforementioned TVs, computers, online devices, kindle, games, I guessed I would slip up somewhere, where do you draw the line?
I did consider asking the whole family to join in with me but with the World Cup on TV and daughter going away to camp for a week the next day (she’ll have no screen for a WEEK) I knew I was onto a loser.
Just before Midnight I signed out of all my accounts, urging people to contact me by phone should the need arise. Who uses landlines nowadays? I put the ipad away and turned my phone off. The only thing that was worrying me were texts (surely they are not classed as ‘screen’) but I resolved to get a family member to check my phone every once in a while.
So bedtime – first challenge, no last quick check of the internet. I haven’t got a paper book on the go as I read ibooks or on the kindle. What was I going to do now? Answer clean out my bedside cabinet. Oh Lord tomorrow was going to be a looong day.
Morning, at least I could have a cup of tea unlike last week! My usual routine is (dare I admit before I get out of bed) in no particular order is, BBC news, East Grinstead Online, Facebook, Twitter, WordPress Reader, Weather, emails and looking at notifications for anywhere else. Once I had turned my ‘real’ alarm clock off (usually it’s my ipad) there was nothing to do but get up.
From then on I must admit it got easier, without interuptions of a ‘quick check’ breakfast for the family was prepared, a bit of housework got done (on a Sunday). Went to help out at church, quick trip to Sainsburys, chopped up the food ready for lunch. The sort of things that would happen normally, except for today it was like a well oiled machine and took half the time.
We had friends come in the afternoon, which made things easier again, we popped over to East Court where there was an open air concert, great fun and lots of chat and laughter. Missed tweeting about the event but the usual East Grinstead Tweeters were all there so I guessed the event was being covered fairly well. Forgot my camera! which was a pain – usually take pictures on my phone. Grrrr.
The other thing I didn’t count on was music. I usually stream my music through the computer, when all the boys retired to the lounge in the evening (World Cup). I had to improvise and find a CD! – remember those?
The evening was tricky, I usually browse while everyone else watches TV. However although I tried to find things to do, for example draft this blog with paper and pen, I got twitchy and bored. Need to think of some thing to do during this time if I am ever to do this challenge again.
Again? What am I saying? Will I do a non-screen day again? Answer is: Probably. It was a really strange exercise and well worth it, needs a little more planning and preparation next time I think, plan a project that needs doing during the non-screen time. Chances are without the distracting, pings, buzzes, whooshes and bells the project might, just might, get done.
To see the rest of my challenges go to http://www.dayzeroproject.com/user/sammioneill or feel free to give me ideas for any more, I may or may not listen. 🙂