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The Amazing Effects of a Weekend Without Television and the Internet

The Amazing Effects of a Weekend Without Television and the Internet

Recently, I was overwhelmed with the constant presence of electronic devices in my life. I realized that I could hardly get through an hour, much less a day, without checking my email or Facebook. And than I decided to carry out the experiment and spend the whole weekend without TV, the internet, mobile phone, games and so on. I wanted just to forget about this stuff and try to find the alternative. My friends and I went to the countryside so I have a lot of time to think about my life, my time and my experiment. In the beginning it was extremely hard not to check emails or call somebody. But then I started using this time to think over so many things in my life. That’s what I had in result.

Being uncomfortable without noise in the background

In the old days, there were only three, four, or five channels, which meant you had to go entertain yourself in some way because watching TV was too dull. But, over time the TV has gained more channels, music is easier to get, and video games have become more fun than real life. Bringing up children on TV and nasty after effects can start to appear in later life. For example, kids watch cruel cartoons and movies where the murders, chases, accidents, divorces happen so often that in time, they subconsciously set themselves up to the worst. I think children should believe in fairy tales, miracles, that good defeats evil.

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But unfortunately, there are so many people that feel incredibly uncomfortable in silence. It is not a new thing, but it is far more ingrained and damaging than most people give it credit for. You are going to find out just how bad you have this “no silence” condition when you try going without TV, the Internet, music or video games over a weekend. Just how uncomfortable you become is unclear, but you may be in for a very big shock as you realize just how lonely and uncomfortable you feel.

You may find yourself talking incessantly on the phone, to which people will become annoyed because they have TV to watch, video games to play, Internet the explore and music to listen to. When you do discover just how bad you have this “no silence” condition, it is up to you to start curing yourself. This weekend without TV, the Internet, music or video games could be the wake up you need so that you are no longer hooked on electronic entertainment. It could be holding you back far more than you realize.

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Having nothing to do because it is harder to waste time

This is another big problem you are going to face that is second only to the point made above. The TV, the Internet, music and/or video games are great because they help you waste time without fuss and effort. Without them, you will start to feel as if you have nothing to do. You will start to feel restless or feel time start to drag.

Time drags and you feel bored and restless because you are removed from the time-vampires that are constant electronic entertainment. Your job is to work through these feelings to free yourself from electronic-entertainment reliance. Lose the reliance and you will start to realize other aspects of your life that you have been neglecting, such as planning for your future, your family, your house, your friends, your kids or your health.

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The uncomfortable feeling of having to think

On the Simpsons, someone turns off the TV and Homer says, “Well turn something on, I’m starting to think.” Though they were making a joke, you will find that you do start to think. The things you think about may not be very good. People have a tendency to be very negative about themselves and their experiences when they are thinking alone.

Furthermore, such a long bout of having to think without cessation may also make you realize some things about yourself. You may realize just how little you are doing with your life, or just how long ago it was when you played with your pets. One hopes that these realizations will prompt you into action so that you change the way things are going.

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The nights are often the worst

You are probably going to be okay during the day. There are often numerous distractions around the house and outside the house that will help you take your mind off the fact you cannot use your TV, the Internet, music or video games. But, at night it starts to sink in that you have very little to do. It is not that you truly have little or nothing to do; it is just that you are so used to having your electronic entertainment that it has blinded you to the other things you may do.

Actually going the distance needs to be done

If you cannot go a full weekend without TV, the Internet, music and video games then you are in trouble. It means you are far too reliant on electronic entertainment and it means your state of mind is not too healthy. A starting point may be to wean yourself slowly away from the TV, the Internet, music and video games. You can start slow and wean yourself off them over time. Replace them with other, more productive, activities.

Just remember that you are in serious psychological trouble if you cannot go the weekend without your TV, Internet, music and video games. It means your reliance on electronic entertainment is filling a gap in your life that you are not addressing. It means that you’re trying to find a refuge but do the opposite. Scientists call this disorder the Internet addiction. It also indicates that you have a compulsion–if not an actual addiction to electronic entertainment. It is not as uncommon as you think, as many people have a legitimate Facebook addiction.

Featured photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/marcelograciolli/ via flickr.com

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Last Updated on March 13, 2019

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

How to Get out of a Rut: 12 Useful Ways to Get Unstuck

Have you gotten into a rut before? Or are you in a rut right now?

You know you’re in a rut when you run out of ideas and inspiration. I personally see a rut as a productivity vacuum. It might very well be a reason why you aren’t getting results. Even as you spend more time on your work, you can’t seem to get anything constructive done. While I’m normally productive, I get into occasional ruts (especially when I’ve been working back-to-back without rest). During those times, I can spend an entire day in front of the computer and get nothing done. It can be quite frustrating.

Over time, I have tried and found several methods that are helpful to pull me out of a rut. If you experience ruts too, whether as a working professional, a writer, a blogger, a student or other work, you will find these useful. Here are 12 of my personal tips to get out of ruts:

1. Work on the small tasks.

When you are in a rut, tackle it by starting small. Clear away your smaller tasks which have been piling up. Reply to your emails, organize your documents, declutter your work space, and reply to private messages.

Whenever I finish doing that, I generate a positive momentum which I bring forward to my work.

2. Take a break from your work desk.

Get yourself away from your desk and go take a walk. Go to the washroom, walk around the office, go out and get a snack.

Your mind is too bogged down and needs some airing. Sometimes I get new ideas right after I walk away from my computer.

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3. Upgrade yourself

Take the down time to upgrade yourself. Go to a seminar. Read up on new materials (#7). Pick up a new language. Or any of the 42 ways here to improve yourself.

The modern computer uses different typefaces because Steve Jobs dropped in on a calligraphy class back in college. How’s that for inspiration?

4. Talk to a friend.

Talk to someone and get your mind off work for a while.

Talk about anything, from casual chatting to a deep conversation about something you really care about. You will be surprised at how the short encounter can be rejuvenating in its own way.

5. Forget about trying to be perfect.

If you are in a rut, the last thing you want to do is step on your own toes with perfectionist tendencies.

Just start small. Do what you can, at your own pace. Let yourself make mistakes.

Soon, a little trickle of inspiration will come. And then it’ll build up with more trickles. Before you know it, you have a whole stream of ideas.

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6. Paint a vision to work towards.

If you are continuously getting in a rut with your work, maybe there’s no vision inspiring you to move forward.

Think about why you are doing this, and what you are doing it for. What is the end vision in mind?

Make it as vivid as possible. Make sure it’s a vision that inspires you and use that to trigger you to action.

7. Read a book (or blog).

The things we read are like food to our brain. If you are out of ideas, it’s time to feed your brain with great materials.

Here’s a list of 40 books you can start off with. Stock your browser with only the feeds of high quality blogs, such as Lifehack.org, DumbLittleMan, Seth Godin’s Blog, Tim Ferris’ Blog, Zen Habits or The Personal Excellence Blog.

Check out the best selling books; those are generally packed with great wisdom.

8. Have a quick nap.

If you are at home, take a quick nap for about 20-30 minutes. This clears up your mind and gives you a quick boost. Nothing quite like starting off on a fresh start after catching up on sleep.

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9. Remember why you are doing this.

Sometimes we lose sight of why we do what we do, and after a while we become jaded. A quick refresher on why you even started on this project will help.

What were you thinking when you thought of doing this? Retrace your thoughts back to that moment. Recall why you are doing this. Then reconnect with your muse.

10. Find some competition.

Nothing quite like healthy competition to spur us forward. If you are out of ideas, then check up on what people are doing in your space.

Colleagues at work, competitors in the industry, competitors’ products and websites, networking conventions.. you get the drill.

11. Go exercise.

Since you are not making headway at work, might as well spend the time shaping yourself up.

Sometimes we work so much that we neglect our health and fitness. Go jog, swim, cycle, whichever exercise you prefer.

As you improve your physical health, your mental health will improve, too. The different facets of ourselves are all interlinked.

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Here’re 15 Tips to Restart the Exercise Habit (and How to Keep It).

12. Take a good break.

Ruts are usually signs that you have been working too long and too hard. It’s time to get a break.

Beyond the quick tips above, arrange for a 1-day or 2-days of break from your work. Don’t check your (work) emails or do anything work-related. Relax and do your favorite activities. You will return to your work recharged and ready to start.

Contrary to popular belief, the world will not end from taking a break from your work. In fact, you will be much more ready to make an impact after proper rest. My best ideas and inspiration always hit me whenever I’m away from my work.

Take a look at this to learn the importance of rest: The Importance of Scheduling Downtime

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Featured photo credit: Joshua Earle via unsplash.com

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