What!? No internet!
For three months, I’ve lived with no wifi at home and limited phone service. There is slow McDonald’s wifi 45 minutes away. And… Life has been amazing without regular, constant acess to the internet.
|One of the few times I went into town for internet, it took two hours to upload two blog posts. Not a good use of time.|
There were initial frustrations, of course. I ran out of podcast episodes. I failed to download my library book on tape in time—after I finally got it after three months of waiting on hold, so now I’ll have to wait another round. I miss being able to keep up with photos from my friend’s hiking adventures.
But I’ve found huge benefits of the no internet life. Amazing things happen to your brain. The clarity of mind and peacefulness remind me of the mental state that happens when going backpacking. I notice more around me. I can dive into reading book after book, and that can open up whole new ways of thinking. Every sunrise and sunset is a whole new event to be enjoyed. It feels like I get to live more. That moments are overflowing with intentionality and appreciation.
I realize how I used to reach for my phone as a way to distract myself from momentary discomfort. Maybe I’d be trying to write an article, and I’d get stuck. Instead of just sitting with it, I impulsively open up instagram to escape.
I’ve enjoyed slow ways to get information. When I have questions that I would normally google answers for, instead I ask the people around me, or search for answers in books. Slower, but when I actually have to work for the answers, I end up learning more.
|Not as fast as google. But you'll find a fascinating world here.|
|"It snowed last night."|
|What!? No facebook!? Yes, I gave up it was just too slow.|
In reading less online, I value personal interactions more. My mind doesn’t wander to some fb post I’ve been meaning to write. The people in front of me are the ones that matter. Their stories are my reality.
As I prepare to head back to the land of internet and 4G, I wonder if I will just instantly revert back to my old ways. I hope I can take some of what I learned back with me, and be more present and less distracted. I want to remember to use the internet as a tool, and with thought, not as a means of distraction.