Digital Detox (Day 1 & 2)

Some notes on how the digital detox is going:

Friday - Day One

I grabbed my phone as soon as I woke up, out of habit, but there was nothing for me to look at, so I stared dumbly at it for a few minutes. My morning became more active after that. Patrick and I drank Americanos at Starbucks, went for a two-mile walk, and did our grocery shopping. I listened to three chapters of Myke Cole’s The Armored Saint and did laundry. In the afternoon, we took another walk, then watched some television.

My day felt oddly spacious, as if my free time had multiplied! In the evening, however, I wanted to go online and read what other people thought about the last two episodes of The Orville. I had opinions, but no place to share or evaluate them. In that moment I felt like Hugh, the disconnected Borg from Star Trek the Next Generation. There were no other voices in my head, and for a few minutes I felt lonely.

We went to bed early, and I fell asleep easily.

Saturday - Day Two

I woke up early today and started writing. Because there was no Twitter to check, I did not delay. Instead, I dove right in, first journaling, then editing five scenes of the new manuscript, then writing 500 words on another project, and 800 on a third project. Wow!

When I write, I often reach a point where I feel fatigued, as if I’m out of runway for that particular story. When this happens, I usually switch to something else like web browsing or social media. Today, I switched from project to project instead, and it felt natural. Can I really work on more than one project a time? It seems so, and I hope it wasn’t a fluke.

Yesterday, my hands automatically opened up Twitter, twice, without me thinking about it consciously. Today, my brain feels a bit calmer.

It occurs to me that my problem with web/social browsing isn’t that the content I read is bad, but that I’m stuffing my brain full of other people’s thoughts all day. To be offline is to reclaim one’s inner life! Creativity is an engine that requires a lot of processing power, and too much Twitter/surfing is like running Chrome with too many tabs and videos open.

The sun is out! I think I’ll go for a walk, and let this morning’s writing percolate in my brain.

Other Detox Logs:

Days 3-5

Days 6-10

My New Internet Habits

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