One of my goals for this year is to switch off on Sundays. No computer, no email, no internet, no social media, no texting, no IM.
I have wanted to give myself this break for a couple of years, but I’ve never managed to do it, because I would always decide last minute, and then find that I had very necessary things to do, and hop back on.
This year I decided to give it another try. But rather than deciding, I’m actually planning ahead. So that means that all blog articles have to be written, posted and edited before Sunday. All important emails have to be written and sent before Sunday. All administrative tasks have to be done before Sunday.
I told myself that by planning ahead this would be a piece of cake. Right?
EEK! No Internet!
What I have found is that being on the computer is a habit for me. If I don’t have anything else to do, I’ll go to my desk and pretend like I’m being productive…rambling around in the name of “research”, posting updates in the name of being “social”, organizing in the name of being “productive”.
Truth is, all that stuff doesn’t matter, and it simply sucks up time.
Another difficult truth is that I wasn’t comfortable with the end results of empty time, and I longed for the ability to fill it up.
The first three weeks were very difficult.
The Sun Has Come Out
After the first three weeks, I adjusted. I was able to feel good about what I had done to get to a switched off Sunday. Many Sundays have been spent frantically doing stuff because I didn’t have my act together enough to get it done ahead of time, or I procrastinated. So I was actually more relaxed.
I’ve also found that I’m more creative. I’m more likely to start…and finish…a small project around the house. Or cook an amazing dinner because I don’t feel rushed. Or spend time constructing Lego structures with my daughter.
I’m finding time to read and craft and be social. All the things that I wanted to do, but felt I didn’t have time before. All because I switched off for one day.
What would happen if you did this?
A few years ago, during a National Switch Off Day I challenged my team to do it. One programmer looked at me and said he wouldn’t survive a whole day without the internet.
So maybe you need to start slower than a whole day? Maybe an afternoon or evening?
What would happen if you switched off? What direction would you go in? Share below.
Photo by andrewasmith