For the past few years, I have been actively cultivating a more intentional life. A more holistic life. A life of value.A life that is more “On Purpose” and less “Lather, Rinse Repeat,” as the saying goes.
In my creation of that type of life, I have been following a number of “Minimalists,” including Courtney Carver. Courtney posted an article on her blog that both fascinated and terrified me.
In the article, Courtney talks about creating fifty-two 24-hour periods of time throughout the year during which you unplug. By unplug, she means disengage from WiFi. No social media, no surfing, shopping, news … no Internet.
I had to wonder, could I do it? Could I take a break from Facebook and Instagram? What about streaming? No Netflix, Hulu, or Gaia? Could I survive without my podcasts? No Webinars or online courses?
I have gone 24 hours or a weekend without access before, of course. Usually it was unintentional or I was on vacation somewhere. And often with an audiobook on download. But could I do it in the comfort of my own home? Could I do it in my regular environment? Could I do it around the habit triggers that fill my days?
I began almost salivating with anticipation, then curiosity got the best of me.
This seemed like a great adventure and a great way to tackle those household projects for which I never seem to have enough time to complete. Time during which I could make a dent in that stack of books accumulating at my bedside. Time to experience a little more outdoor time.
I expanded the definition of “unplugged” to include no use of tablets, kindle, phone, or laptop. Taking the experiment beyond a break from WiFi. It would be too easy for me to get caught up in reading on my Kindle or writing on my laptop. Too easy to stay lost in an audiobook or downloaded podcast. It would defeat the purpose if I spent my “tech-free” time preparing for when I could be back online. I definitely need time in my schedule to write more, just not as much as I needed to be able to be creative using other modalities. Not as much as I needed time to complete my ever growing list of household projects. And not as much as I needed time to connect with family, friends, and self.
I shared Courtney’s article on my Facebook profile thinking many of my friends would like to join me in this experiment. I was surprised at how few actually took me up the challenge. For those who did, I created a Facebook Group in which we could share tips & tricks, support each other, and hold each other accountable.
In October of 2019, I began the journey into “unplugging” once a week for a full 24 hour period of time. Reclaiming 52 days in the year.
But how? In October? With football games and bonfires and meet ups and and and …. life continues to get busier and busier and busier in the fall.
October is my birthday month. My birthday is what I consider to be my own personal New Year. New Year, new habits – right? Perfect timing.
At the time of my writing of this article, I have completed two 24 hour unplugged days. I look forward to the remaining 50. I will be sharing my experiences, discoveries, observations, and learnings about myself. I have had a few really great observations already.
Will you join me on this journey? Challenge yourself to the same or similar experiment? Drop a comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts.