Are you Addicted to the Internet?
I don’t know about you but it has become patently obvious to me that I am addicted to my inbox. I reckon that I click on send/receive at least 30 times per day. It is a powerful and absorbing thing, this internet and its related technologies. I was planning to book into a rehab centre till I learned that a Chinese lightie of 15 was recently BEATEN TO DEATH whilst attending an internet addicts boot camp. The Skynews article also notes that China has the world’s largest internet population, with almost 300 million users, and that they have more than 200 organisations offering treatment for web addiction. Only last month, the nation banned electro-shock therapy as a treatment for the problem. How’s that for harsh my China?
Anyway, back to Boerewors Country. Almost everyone I know spends large chunks of their valuable time staring hypnotically into their computer monitor. Or Blackberry, or i Phone, or Omnia or Palm or PDA. Or Playstation, PSP, X Box or Wii. Or the blerrie TV. We cannot escape being sucked into the information vortex. But what are we seeing in front of us, what information is really being delivered here? To be honest it’s mostly irrelevant twak, which does very little to enhance our already stressed lives.
Let’s check out the most common items up for grabs on the techno-buffet:
I am a very lucky dude. Every day I win millions of Euros in the lotto and can easily buy Fake Rolexes, Top Quality University Degrees, Wonderful Weight Loss Products, Sensual Massages, Penis Enlargers, Viagra and of course Niagra (the female version of Viagra.) Based upon the number of mails I have received in the past 12 months, at least 263 897 people believe my male member is undersized. And this is just in my Junk Mail Folder!
In my inbox, I have 6 507 896 365.33 newsletters, invoices, unread mails, awaiting action tasks, jokes and worst of all, soppy inspirational pieces. In fact, if I see one more “pass this on to your 10 worst enemies and you will be eternally doomed” email involving flowery words accompanied by lame ducks, cute kids, amiable animals, planets, forests, lakes, mountains or flowers, I am going to throw up all over my keyboard. Sies man.
I really love Google. They have allowed me to access the world’s largest library with fast, intelligent searching. Internet Banking allows me to manipulate my meagre money matters to my heart’s content. Have you realised that your money has become an illusion floating in cyberspace? Because you never actually get to see very much of it for real.
For buying and selling almost anything gumtree is a truly awesome site. And online airticket and movie bookings have become a breeze. I also enjoy Youtube come to think of it. And have you heard the SA version of Lady Ga Ga’s Pokerface? It’s called Pap en Vleis and it’s really funny.
Of course the energy I spend on all of these sites leaves me no time to waste on the millions of social networking tools like Blogs, Twitter, Linked In, Plaxo and Facebook (OK – I’ll admit I stumble reluctantly into FB about once per month) I also never get to visit the News Channels and Chat Forums and Flash Games and Celebrity Slobberers and Sleazy Porn Sites. Blind ek se! But hey, here is a Real Newsflash – I just learned that you can now watch the daily news delivered to you by naked people! Yes, if you are over 18, not too prudish and keen for a different angle on the news dangle, click here.
My 9 year old son is already able to kill 2 374 of the enemy per hour. He has thumbs like vice grips. Yet recently, I watched in awe as my wife quickly covered his eyes when a pair of naked female breasts flashed across on our TV screen. I tried to reason with her that our son was far more likely to see real live boobs one day than actually kill somebody, so why not let him have a good look in preparation? Give him a head start so to speak. She told me to shut up and so we agreed to disagree on this touchy issue.
I mostly watch rugby, my wife watches movies and my kids watch cartoon network. I tried to watch Ed, Ed and Eddie once but almost had an epileptic fit. None of us watches the news ever, it’s just too damn depressing. Soap Operas are also banned in our household – who wants to stare vacuously whilst drooling at “Days of other people’s lives?” DSTV continues to dish us up miles and miles of nothingness. Why don’t they let us choose our 10 or fifteen favourite shows – allow us to design a custom bouquet which we will really enjoy, for a reduced fee? Catch a wake up you Monopolistic Monolith!
I smaak the Apple i-Phone stukkend –you can do absolutely anything with it. (Except make a simple phone call.) The Blackberry is now known as the crackberry because it is so addictive. I hate meetings involving people with Blackberrys cause they don’t pay me much attention – their shifty eyes and surreptitious toggly fingers are very distracting. Meanwhile my new Nokia takes photo’s and synchronises my contacts and diary through blueteeth with my laptop which is wirelessly connected to my WAN which uses an ADSL pipe to connect to the world wide wiki. Kan jy dit glo my Bru!!!
Ja well no fine. So what do we do to relax, find balance and switch off from all this attractive and addictive technology? Here are some ideas:
- I have been told to read 2 great books and I intend to do so just as soon as I can find the time. They are: the 4 Hour Workweek and Take back your LIFE.
- Download a simple, powerful relaxation exercise from my website by clicking here. It’s free!
- Resolve to only click send and receive only twice per day. Or automatically at 2 hour intervals (Easier said than done).
- Set appointments with yourself for exercise, relaxation, vacation and family time etc. I colour code mine green in Outlook, so I can visually see if my life is balanced.
- Read a non-fiction book which uplifts you. Click here for my recommended reading booklist.
- Plan a weekend away or holiday – do it NOW (use the internet)
- Invest / spend / live some quality time with your kids.
- Tell a loved one how much they mean to you.
- Listen to uplifting music.
- Attend my one hour Presentation, Winning Ways to Work Smarter, or my one day Workshop on Time Management.
Also, if you have a moment to mail me, I would love to hear about how you deal with all these technology issues and what actions you are taking to balance your life.
Have to go now – my inbox is calling me. “I’m coming honey……”
Till next time