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Offline Fasts for Clarity

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Offline Fasts for Clarity

In this world of powerful, always-on connectivity, with constant RSS streams of media battling for our eyeballs, with content moving off the television and onto our portable devices, it becomes easy to forget that all things digital have an OFF setting, and that occasionally, it might be useful to exercise that option.

What would a day offline look like for you? For one, you wouldn’t have to check your multiple email accounts (work, home, organizational). You’d skip your RSS feeds for an entire day, missing your chance to learn of yet another fourteen great hacks to make time more plentiful and meaningful to yourself. You wouldn’t be able to Google for the answer to basic questions, such as the birthdate of Dr. Phil (September 1st, by the way). You couldn’t check in on any auctions for authentic Victorian electric toothbrushes. You wouldn’t be able to see what YouTube was serving up as the most recent example of humanity’s greatness, and you wouldn’t be able to drop 99 cents into the till at the Apple iTunes store for that song you’ve had stuck in your ear all day.

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What would you do instead? What part of your life remains untouched by the web? Could you equally shut down the cell phone for the day? Let’s include your television, the radio, and any other device that communicates to you. Remove all the signals. Clear everything out of the environment that will try to push more information in your direction. That means missing a day of the Times and the Journal, too.

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Are you twitching yet?

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I offer that there’s something to consider in this experience. Further, I’m curious as to how this fast might impact your ability to be creative, your relationships with the people in your house, and the way you use media in a given day. It might just be one of the more radical life hacks we could offer up. The physical world, your inner thoughts and feelings, relationships with others in close proximity, are all things that are easy to bury under the constant burst of information that faces us day to day. How could you hack this to your advantage?

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–Chris Brogan writes about self-improvement and creativity at [chrisbrogan.com]. He is twitching.

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