Screen Time

Yes, I know, I have been terribly remiss about posting on my blog lately.  It’s all about screen time:  I spend about nine hours a day at work staring at a computer screen, and when I get home, I hate to spend too much more time in front of a computer screen.

Ok, so it’s about screen time AND self-control:  I should be able to just turn on my laptop for fifteen minutes to write a blog post, but it’s so tempting to just check Facebook (which I actually hate) and then just check my email (far too much work to actually answer any emails, though) and then just check my work email (as if I hadn’t just left work) and then just check the Garnet Hill sale of the day…and then the entire evening is gone and I feel like I’ve wasted my life.  And, more often than not, I never got around to writing that blog post after all.

I see this pattern with the kids who come to the library after school.  They all race here to be the first on the computer (each user gets a half hour on the computer before being bumped for people on the waitlist) and then they slump down in front of the computer and mindlessly play computer games.  Yes, I slump too.  Yes, my web surfing is just as mindless as the computer game playing.  The difference is that I’m a bit older and I grew up without computers – and I am beginning to feel more than a bit mortal and don’t want to waste what’s left of my outside-of-work life in front of the computer.

So I made a goal for myself around the time I broke my foot, mostly because it’s hard to balance a laptop on your lap when you have to keep your foot elevated (which I had to do for eight weeks).  The goal, which I have achieved, was to spend more time reading in the evenings.  It’s been absolutely wonderful – I’ve had time to read books other than the books I need to read for book groups.  I’ve rediscovered Agatha Christie, and now I’m ready to rediscover some of my favorite authors: Jane Austen, Thomas Hardy, Charles Dickens, Nathaniel Hawthorne.

But it’s time for me to add a new goal to this goal of reading; it’s time for me to spend fifteen minutes a night writing on my blog…and then to exercise that thing called self-restraint and Turn Off The Bloody Computer so that I can read.

What do you think? Can I do it?

4 thoughts on “Screen Time”

  1. Hi Abs, welcome back. I know just what you mean. I’ve been taking weekend breaks (as much as possible, since sometimes it’s the only way to communicate w/ our kids) from the computer and it’s been quite lovely. I spend much more time outdoors and reading and cooking…and oh, my goodness, actually keeping a journal…handwritten! I had an interesting piece show up in my inbox this week, and though it’s not exactly the same topic, it is related, dealing with distractions while multitasking, and the technology that allows…or actually enables us to try to accomplish a thousand things at once. “Try” being the operative word. Here’s the link:

    NYTimes: Brain, Interrupted

  2. Yes you can do it! And as a loyal follower of your blog, I look forward to those posts!

  3. Jean – I know this isn’t your blog, but I don’t know how to get in touch with you any other way anymore…has your horses/divorces book been published yet? -L

  4. Liz – glad to know I’m not the only one! It is lovely to rediscover life away from the computer, isn’t it?
    Jean – thanks for having faith in me! We’ll see if I really *can* do it!

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