Life without technology

Posted by: Sara Grasmon
disconnectingAfter a bit of a blogging hiatus, I’m back. Just what was I doing during my time away from the keyboard? Any and all of the following: driving nearly 1,200 miles, moving into a new apartment and starting a new job. I’m happy to report that the aforementioned activities all went relatively smoothly, and that I’ll still be doing some work for Bellmont Partners. OK, now that we have all that straight, I’m ready to re-join the blogging world.

Actually, I’m more than ready. Why? Because after nearly three years of constant connection, I went almost three weeks with minimal technology. Limited internet, no cable. My only connection to the outside world: my phone. Guess that’s what I get for moving across the country.

At first, I felt stressed about my lack of connectivity. I was worried I’d miss an important e-mail or message, but then, I had a bit of an ah-hah moment. I realized that contrary to popular belief, everything in life doesn’t have to be instantaneous. Nothing people would e-mail me about, post on Facebook or tweet could be important enough to need immediate attention. If it was, they’d call.

My anxiety started to leave, and I quickly began to appreciate the simplicity of a less connected life. I found other, sometimes more productive, ways to spend my time and learned to work more efficiently when I had the opportunity to connect. I read more, explored my new city and watched some classic films that I hadn’t seen in a while. I stopped living my life around technology, and I learned to concentrate on the present.

Honestly, it’s pretty great to be re-connected, but I definitely gained some insight from this experience. Now, I try to set aside some time each day to disconnect. This helps me focus on other projects or just simply relax. I don’t feel the need to constantly check for new messages, and I know that everything doesn’t always have to happen instantaneously.

So, here’s my challenge for you: try disconnecting. I’m not suggesting you go three weeks, but I think you could start with part of a day, a full day or, if you’re feeling crazy, maybe a whole weekend. Find creative ways to spend your time that don’t involve an internet or cable connection, and re-discover what life was like before we were all constantly connected. Don’t worry, your e-mail, network updates and voicemails will all still be there when you re-connect.

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