Before anything, I would like you to take a seat back and analyze how many hours in a day do you spend browsing through the internet?
It’s okay, take your time.
Once you are done reading the article, I want you to comment on how many hours you spend on the internet every single day.
What is Internet Detox?
Much like how our body has the natural mechanism of getting rid of all the harmful substances from our body, we can get rid of our addiction to this digital world that we find ourself scrolling through most of the day.
For the most part, the internet is good for you.
I mean, you get to learn new things, explore new opportunities and even have fun with the entertainment sections and social media handles.
But, as I have learned from people, there is a fine line between consuming something and overeating it.
That is sometimes what we do with the digital means of resources in our lives too, be it the smartphone you have or even the laptop that you are currently reading this blog on.
According to an article published on the Inc.com, it suggested that “the average person spends over four hours a day on their device.”
And we are just talking about the average, sometimes the same can even cross the double of what the average suggests.
All that being said, you must be wondering why is this girl suddenly so interested in discussing the internet and digital detox, right?
Well, I thought I’d do a storytime of how I went on without using the internet for over two weeks.
How did it happen, you ask?
Well, if I am not wrong, because of some Hindu-Muslim riot that happened in West Bengal during the year of 2017.
I don’t want to dig up the past about the unrest but let us just say that the riot ensued because of some falsely circulated information across the social media which led to a complete Internet ban around that entire part of West Bengal for over two weeks at a stretch.
Saying it lightly, I was distraught.
Not because I wouldn’t have an internet connection to keep up with my Facebook updates but because I wouldn’t have an internet connection to finish my freelance projects.
I had to inform all my clients about the distress and had to ask some for an indefinite extension and for some clients, I had to take a complete break from work. Lest be said, I was not happy because I become very restless when I have nothing to do.
But, this two-week ban on the internet proved out to be a boon as well once I recovered from the “initial trauma”.
Why was it a good experience?
Well, as I mentioned before, I was very skeptical and anxious through the process, thinking that my phone was malfunctioning for the first few days.
All I wanted to do was bang my head on the wall or bang my phone across the wall.
Yeah, it did become a little aggressive at some point. But, the points were justified.
It took me 3-4 days to realize that the internet connection wasn’t going to reestablish itself anytime soon and that was when I started preparing myself to just screw it and get over it.
It was some tough 3-4 days initially.
But, if you are here wondering why it was such an exhilarating experience, I’ll tell you why.
I started working on my writing more
In 2017, when everything of this chaos happened, I was working just as a freelancer. I was waiting for my graduation results so I could jet off to some other state with a stable job in hand.
Given that I was so after “making it” big, I forgot that I started writing because I was passionate about it and not because I wanted to earn money from it. That was a sight that I lost control of through the process.
When the internet connection didn’t come back after 3-4 days, I brought my laptop out and just started writing. I still have that document saved. It was a start to a novel that I was thinking of writing.
I didn’t complete it, not even close to it. Maybe, someday, I will.
But, from the fifth day, I could feel myself feeling so liberated while my fingers glided across the keypad because, for the first time in so long, I was writing for myself, without any kind of withholding. No pressure of keywords, no pressure of ranking, no pressure of being judged for the content.
I felt free.
This is why I always suggest content writers to have a separate outlet for themselves where at least once in a week, they write for themselves.
I went out of the house
2017 was the year I didn’t explore much. Given that I had the pressure of completing my graduation and scoring well in the final exams, I did hole myself up at home, trying to revise, study and revise some more. The only places that I went to were probably college and tuitions.
Tragic, I know.
But, the lack of internet connection created an intervention for me to finally step out of the house and explore things around.
I didn’t do anything earth-shattering but even that tiny amount felt like a step in the right direction.
Will I recommend you do too?
Given that I was kind of forced to do the “internet detox”, I don’t know if I’d actively advocate you to do so.
If you are finding the majority of your life is dependent on the internet and the functions surrounding it, it would be futile for you to indulge in this.
What I would recommend is for you to actively take a vacation and then go on an internet detox because I think that would be a better option.
We are all so engrossed in flashing our lives on the internet and keeping up with other’s lives on the same platforms, we have forgotten to actually live our own life through it.
Did you have an answer to how many hours in a day you spend on the internet that I asked in the beginning?
If yes, drop it down in the comments. I am curious. I easily spend around 5-6 hours on an average in a day.
What about you?