Time Offline

By Gina
@Gina145 (3951)
Johannesburg, South Africa
April 8, 2017 1:09pm CST
I've been saying for a long time that I spend too much time online, but I've been struggling to change. Then a few days ago I read an interesting article on Medium - 4 Amazing Benefits of Reducing Your Screen Time - and something about that article really impacted on me. My attention span is terrible and many nights I struggle to fall asleep. Could spending less time online really help with those things? The author's idea of no screen time for two hours before going to sleep as well as first thing on waking offered a method rather than just abstractly cutting down on computer time, so I've been trying to see if I can do it. I'm on day four now and I can't say I'm finding it easy, especially since I haven't been home a lot during the day. I need to spend time online as well as editing photos, and I don't know where that time is going to come from. I foresee that this will reduce my internet income in the short term, but if it will help me to finally break my habit of being a night owl then it's worth it. Meanwhile I've actually been finding time for reading books. I still need to find a way to meet my myLot challenge for April though, so I'm going to need to find more time for this site somehow.
When you’re writing a book on creative habits, you end up conducting lots of experiments. A few of my previous experiments include:
10 people like this
14 responses
@Morleyhunt (21514)
• Canada
8 Apr 17
I'm here in fits and bursts. Later this evening I might have some time if the grandkids go to bed early...or I get home earlier than I expect to.
2 people like this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@Morleyhunt My problem is that I visit a whole bunch of sites in fits and bursts and never seem able to focus on one at a time. I've got a very short attention span, especially when I'm at my computer.
2 people like this
@marlina (143900)
• Canada
2 May 17
@Gina145 I use a timer to manage my time on the Internet.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
7 May 17
@marlina I've tried that but it didn't work. There were always things I wanted to finish so I just switched off the timer and went on working. The best thing for me is not to switch on the computer unless I've got enough available time to do what needs to be done.
@paigea (34328)
• Canada
8 Apr 17
It sounds like it is worth a try. I should try it too. Somehow, you need to find that time during the day to complete your work you do on the computer though. A bit of a scheduling challenge
2 people like this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@paigea It's a big challenge, especially seeing I want to dedicate my spare time during the day to working on my bonsai trees. I often bring trees inside to work on at night, but it's better to do that work outdoors so that I can get some fresh air.
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@CRK109 (14651)
• United States
8 Apr 17
In my quest for a healthier life, I've been getting off the computer at least one hour before planning to get into bed. I sit and read for that hour, and take more time if I'm really into the book and not sleepy yet. I've been sleeping a lot better than I used to. So this seems to be working very well for me.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@CRK109 I'm glad to hear that it's working for you. That gives me a lot of hope.
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@CRK109 (14651)
• United States
10 Apr 17
@Gina145 I know it takes some patience and determination. Sometimes getting offline isn't easy. But it's necessary for better sleep. At least, that's what I've found. I wish you all the best with this!
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
10 Apr 17
@CRK109 Thanks. I'm finding it tough but hopefully it will get easier in time. I'm enjoying reading real books, but I feel like I'm missing a lot online too.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (386336)
• Switzerland
9 Apr 17
I have set rules for myself, I never come back to my computer after dinner. When I quit to go down in the kitchen to make dinner, my day at the computer is over. This helped a lot, now I have to reduce the morning hours at the computer.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@LadyDuck I wish I could stop that early, but it's not likely to happen any time soon. Hopefully one day I'll become as disciplined as you are. So far I'm aiming for no computer after watching television, but I've already broken that rule once when I had no free time during the day. I spent very little time online that night though.
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@LadyDuck (386336)
• Switzerland
10 Apr 17
@Gina145 I know that my husband does not appreciate to see me disappear to go to my computer after we have watched the TV. I usually go to bed to read a book, until I can sleep.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
10 Apr 17
@LadyDuck It's just me and my Mom here and she doesn't like the hours I keep either. If I'm to follow this guys advice of no screens for two hours before going to sleep then I'll still be up late though, just not as late as I have been. I'm enjoying getting some REAL reading done but I've had so little time online for the last few days that I really feel like I might be missing something important.
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@dgobucks226 (30010)
5 Aug 17
I am usually on in the early AM, before dinner time and at 10:30 PM. You are right about night owling. Sometimes I get so caught up in the posts and comments it's 12 o'clock and past my usual bed time. I am going to have to try your suggestion especially in the evening or rearrange my evening time. Thanks for the post!
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
6 Aug 17
@dgobucks226 I can't believe that it's nearly four months since I wrote this post and I haven't been online after 10pm even once. I'm getting to bed a little earlier than I used to but still a lot later than I really should. But in time I may yet succeed in breaking my pattern of being a night owl. The one negative is that I've been finding very little time for myLot, but I guess one has to make some sacrifices to improve other areas of one's life.
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@dgobucks226 (30010)
6 Aug 17
@Gina145 It's always so kind of trade off isn't it Gina.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
6 Aug 17
@dgobucks226 It sure is. Part of my problem is that I've been trying to fit too much into my days.
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@Beatburn (4314)
• Philippines
8 Apr 17
This is helpful, thanks! I sleep less now and wake up early and I think it's the amount of screen time I spend.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@Beatburn I wish I could get away with less sleep. My problem is that I sleep at the wrong time. It's a nightmare on days when I need to be somewhere early because I struggle to fall asleep the night before, then I struggle to get up in the morning and I'm tired all day.
1 person likes this
@Beatburn (4314)
• Philippines
9 Apr 17
@Gina145 I can relate. The anxiety that builds up as you struggle to go to sleep and then wake up very early. The rest of the day becomes difficult.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
10 Apr 17
@Beatburn Hopefully we can both do something to change that.
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@snowy22315 (135481)
• United States
19 Apr 17
I spend too much time onine as well. I think watching the screen at night actually helps me fall asleep though.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
19 Apr 17
@snowy22315 There have certainly been times when I've found it difficult to stay awake in front of my computer but the experts say that the kind of light that computers emit is bad for sleep and I'm not going to argue with them. I've certainly been sleeping better the last few days but that may be partly due to the fact that I've been drinking less coffee.
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@snowy22315 (135481)
• United States
19 Apr 17
@Gina145 Yes, you would have to keep your coffee consumption the same in order to test your theory.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
20 Apr 17
@snowy22315 I guess you're right but I'd rather do what's going to be best for me in the long term and not worry too much about theories. Between the two they certainly seem to be making a difference though.
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@reskyyandi (3642)
• Indonesia
14 Apr 17
I always spend time online more than 12 hours, I am too adictive with internet
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
15 Apr 17
@reskyyandi You need to change that. Spending so much time online isn't healthy.
1 person likes this
• Indonesia
16 Apr 17
@Gina145 yeah, I know that. But it is really hard to change that
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
18 Apr 17
@reskyyandi I know. I'm finding it really hard, but I'm trying. I feel like I'm missing a lot, but I guess that will change in time.
@PatZAnthony (14937)
• Charlotte, North Carolina
14 Apr 17
Spending time offline is a great idea. The world seems to be obsessed with staying online. Many we know do not watch TV, don't go out much at all, but are online talking to someone!
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
15 Apr 17
@PatZAnthony Thankfully I've got my interest in bonsai to keep me doing something constructive offline, but I've been neglecting my trees so that's one of the things I'm trying to change.
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@PatZAnthony (14937)
• Charlotte, North Carolina
16 Apr 17
@Gina145 Many of us have a full life away from 'online' adventures, but forget!
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
18 Apr 17
@PatZAnthony That's so true.
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@WriterAI (5402)
• Bulgaria
25 Apr 17
Same problems here.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
27 Apr 17
@WriterAI I hope you find a way to deal with it. I've been spending a lot less time online since I wrote this post but I'm not finding it easy.
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@WriterAI (5402)
• Bulgaria
27 Apr 17
@Gina145 I see.
1 person likes this
• Algeria
19 Apr 17
i also feel like i spend a lot of time online.. but i have jobs online and try to study and learn new things online.. and tlak to my friedns.. so i really need the internet t do that.. we are very linked to the internet in todays world.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
19 Apr 17
@khaledsifou I know just what you mean. Today's kids are so linked to technology that they hardly seem to take part in physical activities any more.
1 person likes this
• Algeria
20 Apr 17
@Gina145 yes you are right we are getting more lazy nowadays and we very lindked to the technolgoy.; and even it affects us badly sometimes.. so we have to use the technology wisely and enjoy life witout it as well .
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@Phelly02 (465)
• Philippines
11 Oct 17
I always made my Saturday and Sundays my rest day including limiting myself from too much internet exposure.
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@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
11 Oct 17
Unfortunately I don't have the self discipline to do that. And the weekends are often my busiest days.
@jobelbojel (29112)
• Philippines
16 Apr 17
I have read somewhere as well that reducing gadget activities will be beneficial. One to two hours of no on-line activities is advisable.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
18 Apr 17
@jobelbojel It really needs to be more than that. It's one of the reasons I don't have internet on my phone.
@maezee (42254)
• United States
9 Apr 17
I will be checking thid article out. I would also like to cut back on my internet usage and spend more time outdoors! Its hard when you use computers for online work though.
1 person likes this
@Gina145 (3951)
• Johannesburg, South Africa
9 Apr 17
@maezee I know how hard it is. The fact that I spend a lot of time at my computer editing photos doesn't help either. I hope the article helps and that you're able to cut down on your internet usage too.