Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Quitter Chronicle: Life without Facebook - Week 1

Tom Hanks in Castaway, from IMDB

I'm feeling a bit like I'm a castaway on a desert island.

Quitting Facebook in the first week back at work was probably not the best timing. People are still on holidays (my colleagues who make me laugh, who bring energy and dynamism to our projects, my girlfriends). The work pendulum is still gathering momentum for the start of the year.

I've been craving connection. I've checked my emails more often than I would like - made worse by the fact that as part of this 'digital fast' I have also unsubscribed from the masses of eNewsletters that I was receiving but not reading. And that people are on holidays (lots of out of office) and are probably still connecting and updating in the way they are accustomed to - via Facebook.

I've looked as smh.com.au a few times a day - so much so that I have been getting pop-ups warning me that I have almost used up my monthly allocation of free articles, and an invitation to subscribe at a cost. I have been taking for granted that I do stay in touch with the world for free via Facebook. At this stage I can't really see a difference between the journalism on SMH vs Huffington Post - not enough to warrant paying for it.

But there have been positives too:
  • I played scrabble last night with my housemate (he whipped my butt!)
  • I've written more blog posts than I have in 6 months
  • I've written in my journal most days and been more inward looking, rather than looking outside myself for distractions and solutions
  • I've had time set aside for reading the books on my bookshelves that have sat unread for months
  • I've exercised more, as I don't have the temptation of sitting on the bus trawling social media. It's also been great weather in Sydney, and I felt sloth-like over the break so I'm inspired to walk whenever I can
  • I signed up for this MOOC
I'm still on track to stay off until the end of February and am content making these observations.

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