August 21, 2013

Disconnect The Internet

Here’s a productivity tip for you: Disconnect the internet.

“Well DUH!” might be your response, and rightly so. All the online opportunities of wasting time are well known to anyone working in the creative field. The web’s a great tool, but if it’s just means procrastination, then it’s your enemy.

Photo by rick (CC)
Photo by rick (CC)

I recently found myself without online access, involuntarily. The 3G was out, wifi too, and there I was trying to get some work done. I had three things on my todo list that didn’t require online connectivity, but did I tick those off? No, I was too irritated and stressed out by the outage that I didn’t get anything done at all, resulting in rescheduled tasks and rushed duties during the afternoon and evening.

There’s a huge difference in turning off internet access, and being forced offline for reasons beyond your control. I regularly use the flight mode feature for blocking out distractions when writing on my iPad, and my computer has almost all notifications hidden. There are so many things going on in our online lives that it’s easy to get distracted.

I think that’s why being forced offline is so stressful. Suddenly we’re not connected to the world anymore. I urge you to consider what that obsession means to you and how you live your life.

I would also like to repeat my initial productivity tip: Disconnect the internet. When you can, and need to – never involuntary.

Thoughts? Let @tdh know on Twitter, or find me elsewhere. There is also a newsletter.