When we moved from Durham, we also said goodbye to the internet. This was a conscious choice. We're now almost one year into this experiment and I don't think we'll ever go back.
Could we get internet? Sure, we live out in the country, but you can still pay for a satellite connection. It's expensive, but money wasn't really a factor in our decision.
Primarily, I didn't want to look back at my life and regret spending the bulk of my free time on Netflix, or not even watching Netflix, but looking for something to watch on Netflix. Since 2007 when Netflix streaming was introduced, I've felt it's been an addiction that has sucked up all my free time. When I look back and think about all that time I wasted endlessly clicking, clicking, clicking, and how I could have used that time to write - honestly, I think I'd be published by now.
When you move to a new place, have you ever noticed how calm and healthy you feel in the days before the cable company hooks up your internet? We noticed and decided, "Hey, why not just leave it off...forever?" Couldn't be happier with that decision. And being millenials, it almost goes without saying that we'd already given up tv.
So what happened once we really and completely cut the cord? We began reading more, started new creative projects or got further along in existing ones. My book is progressing much faster now than when the internet held this constant hold over me and its endless supply of distractions. I have proof. I've kept records of my daily writing word counts for the last two years. Back when we had internet, I averaged ~300 words/day. Now I average ~500/day, sans internet (which is still not a great word count, but considering I have a full time job and eke out just an hour+ of writing early every morning before work, I'm proud of that number).
Granted, we're not completely cut off from the world, nor am I advocating that anyone become a total Luddite. You need some internet access to handle life's little logistics like paying bills and sending emails, but that can be done on your smartphone. The limits of your cell phone's data plan will still prevent you from watching streaming video. If I need to send a document for work, or post something on this blog, I hotspot through my phone. If I need to do some research, I'll go to the library. Otherwise, I'm happy without the distraction at home.
-Downloading e-books has become a hassle of remembering to bring my kindle to work in order to use the internet there.
-That's all I've got.
Could you live without the internet at home? Would you try it? It may sound crazy, but I swear it's worth it. There's value in boredom. It forces you to take that extra step, work a little harder, create your own distraction. The internet and all those other electronic devices are keeping us from doing that. Yes, it's ironic hearing this message on a blog, but hey, at least I'm creating something new for the internet instead of always and only consuming it (which I already do plenty of).
Go ahead, I dare you to turn off the wi-fi, get creative and be happy.
Writing Streak: 0 days
My Books on Amazon:
Waking Lions by Avelet Gundar-Goshen
Never Let Me Go
by Kazuo Ishiguro