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Redefining My Relationship with the Internet

I’ve tried writing this post three times now.

I always get hung up about five hundred words in. I feel like I’m defending myself like I did something wrong and so I start over.

Not this time.

Last Sunday, I decided to quit the internet. It wasn’t one of those “Oh, I’m gonna go find myself in nature, build a tiny house, and find happiness” sort of deals, but it was more of a “I can’t take this anymore. The information overload and negativity are just too much and I’m fucking done.”

I activated the Light Android Launcher from F-Droid, added my texts, e-reader app, and camera and blocked everything else. I put my laptop and Surface in a drawer and just said screw it.

All the work I’ve done to reduce the negativity by changing my browsing habits, using extensions to block comments, and removing myself from social media have helped, but its not perfect. I’m beginning to think the nuclear option may be a logical choice.

Not using the internet at home was relatively easy once I broke myself of the habit of reaching for my phone when I think of something. I use it a lot to manage my to-do lists as well as to answer questions such as: “who is that actress?” or “was that Brian Pillman Jr. I saw in the crowd on AEW?” After the second night of not looking up those random thoughts, I stopped reaching for my phone.

At work it was a bit harder, because I have a lot of downtime some days and I use that to catch up on blogs and browse reddit. I was able to substitute my normal internet usage with reading books which I felt was a better way to spend my time, but can be a bit tiresome. I was able to confirm that I do not have the attention span I once had.

I still used the internet sparingly. I paid bills, checked my email once a day, and I posted my movies blog post last week (it was pre-written the week before). Occasionally, a friend would send me a link of something to read, and I’d check it out, but that was about the extent of my internet usage.

Last night, I decided to hop back online and check a few things out. It didn’t take long for that nauseating feeling that I was experiencing the week prior to come back. I don’t want any part of that.

I’ve had a lot of time to think about the internet and the role it plays in my life last week. I have quite a few thoughts that I considered pouring out into one massive opus, but then decided against it. Instead, I think I’ll just post a few small posts with my thoughts and ideas over the next several days. They won’t be the most organized or well written posts, but it’ll help me exercise these thoughts and hopefully redefine my relationship with the internet.

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