No Distractions: week 2

September 19, 2014

Week 2 of the Great iPhone clearance and good things are happening…

I no longer have to rely on the Pomodoro technique (e.g. the FocusTime app) to get into a good state of concentration/knuckle down to work on detail-oriented projects. Amazing considering I thought it would take longer for that to return, though it’s good for getting back into work after say, lunch or a tea break. The evenings feel a little longer because I’m not wasting time on sites I’ve been on most of the day anyway…Ideas are slowly blossoming, things being filed away for later use.

This week I came across Jess Lively’s podcasts, specifically the 14th august episode discussing ‘e-brain’; basically everything I was feeling about internet burnout/overwhelm. Even though rationally it’s obvious that you’ll never be alone in feeling this at some point, it’s easy to forget that, so to hear it from other people is a nice bolster. Cut to somewhere about the 20 minute mark and they talk about their own ways of dealing with it (i.e. similar to this: no phone/internet blocked time, make time for walks/getting outdoors/allowing ideas to click). One thing I’ll definitely be taking on board is get a proper alarm clock. That way = no checking your phone last thing before sleep, even just to set your wake-up call.

I think there’s a good amount of underlying anxiety that we don’t notice when we look at a phone full of red number notifications. When we first started with them they were enticing – that little red bubble in the top right of the screen and a little vignette of interaction. But now they’re nothing but headache inducing, in such a subliminal way that I didn’t realise how much better I felt until they were no longer there.

So, week 2 = a success in the most part. I’m more organised because instead of five different to-do apps, everything is narrowed down to notes/lists in one place, and work days are flying by. Sure it’s frustrating when I need to do simple things (such as email an image) and I have to go back into the settings to switch mail back on, but once I’m back to a solid state of concentration/work pace, I’ll slowly allow certain apps back onto my phone if possible, but definitely by no means all. Incredibly glad I’m doing this experiment – it’s certainly helping!

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