Wednesday, April 13, 2011


I was feeling overwhelmed by the amount of content on the Internet. Webinars, blogs with great advice, funny videos, informative videos, newspapers. All calling to me. Read me, watch me.

Too much.

So I stepped away from the ‘net. Shut the computer off a little earlier each night and turned it on later in the morning.

Guess what I discovered? My house is full of content. Stacks of unread books and magazines. Unlistened-to CDs. A full DVR of must-see TV. Unwatched movies from Netflix queue. Movies that have never made it on to the queue.

And that’s just the living room. In the sewing room, fabric, threads, stamps, patterns array themselves into rows of unfinished projects. Never-even-started projects. Half-sewn projects. Still-just-an-idea projects.

Yikes. Too much.

And then I remember the reason I have so many books to read, and things to sew is that as soon as I finish one, I start another. Something peaks my interest, sending me in a new direction. I’m curious. I’m interested. I’m alive.

Life is an unfinished project. Life is content.

So when it gets to be too much, I disconnect from my stuff, just like I do from the computer. I leave the house for a day. I avoid my sewing room and ignore the DVR. I let the Netflix envelope remain unopened.

Do you need to turn it all off for while? How do you cope?


Monica Ferris said...

I am going to a big convention the end of this month (Malice Domestic) and have decided not to bring my computer along. I have found it very theraputic to break away from the 'Net now and again.

Terri Thayer said...

Good plan, Monica! It's amazing how good that can feel.

I'm heading out of town to give a talk today to a place where I may not have access. It'll be a good palate cleanser, I think.

Dru said...

When I know that I NEED to do something, I get up early and don't turn on the computer until the project is done.

Linda O. Johnston said...

You inspire me, Terri. I need to step away more. I'll at least do so at Malice, too, like Monica!

Terri Thayer said...

I've been staying off the computer first thing in the morning, Dru. That really helps my productivity.

Step away, Linda! You'll like it.

Joanna Campbell Slan said...

Terri, I'm editing Book #5 of the Kiki Lowenstein series before I turn it in. (Not the final edit.) I simply have to ignore a lot of email. It's just to much like a big black hole...and Monica, I find it really distracting to bring a computer to a conference. I'm there to be with people, so the computer does NOT enhance the experience.

Betty Hechtman said...

I love to walk away from the computer and do something. I have a BlackBerry, but I barely look at it.

I laugh when I see people out walking their dogs, staring at their smart phones. Geez, why not look at the sky, the trees, or at least where you're going.

Terri Thayer said...

The problem for me is that the content is everywhere! Conferences are people to meet, lectures to hear, mingling to do.

I'm on the Lost Coast of CA right now. Population in the hundreds. The next bigger town is an hour plus drive. The pace is decidedly slower. Cell phone coverage is minimal. Internet is sketchy. The ocean beckons. I feel myself slowing down but I'm glad it's only for two days.