Digital declutter during weekends has had a completely different vibe for me compared to work days, where weekends so far have been easier for disconnection versus being at the office in front of a tempting computer screen most of the day.
As the work week started I found myself missing my personal email the most. It turns out I am addicted to the stimulation it provides, even more than Facebook because, surprisingly, I hardly miss the latter.
My personal email is mainly made up of favorite blogs subscriptions, amazon deals and make-up and kids’ clothes deals, in addition to linkedin updates. As a result, my initial rule of checking it during the weekend for 30 minutes only could not stand, so I amended it to checking it daily, only on desktop, for 5 to 10 minutes while the timer is set and running. I also started unsubscribing to many commercial newsletters because they are crowding my email that I can’t find the important communications fast.
I have also modified the Netflix rule where I can now watch 3, not 2, episodes of Netflix a week. I did this because I mostly watch comedy series which usually take 20 minutes per episode and that would have finished my allowance in 4 days only according to my 10 minute rule which was too extreme for me.
As a matter of fact, minimizing streaming entertainment has been the most challenging for me, 10 minutes a day only is not easy, where I mentioned before that I already have this particular habit of enjoying evening meals while watching something, mostly comedy, on Netflix. I used to think of this time as my mental break, so it is going to be interesting to see what will happen in the coming 20 days as I change my relationship to entertainment , not that it is harmful or anything, but I do believe that depending on something this much must be unhealthy for us and a red flag we need to take care of.
During digital declutter I also noticed I’ve been missing local news, because I barely listen to any radio show and never buy newspapers and Facebook and twitter were my sources. Since I’m not using them now I decided I need to stay more tuned to morning radio shows to keep up to speed with local or even international news that are relevant to us and maybe read news online once in a while.
I also happen to love music apps, like anghami, and I didn’t even consider them in my digital declutter challenge. However, I noticed a funny thing about the human brain; we always want a way out. So, skipping songs and looking for the perfect song or playlist has become my new thing while working or while doing house chores. Our brains got so used to entertainment that even music apps could be addictive and time wasting. This is not a totally finding, I experienced this in my reading fasting last year.
Don’t worry though, I have not set rules for those apps during digital declutter. It’s just about mindfulness of the exit strategies we implement to avoid the present moment.
It’s been indeed a very interesting challenge so far, and I wonder what more insights I would enjoy finding out during the remainder of the month.