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Archive for July 16th, 2010

For my entire life I have been battling the chronic Major Procrastination Disorder, which is said to affect 7 out of 10 high school students and 9 out of 10 graduate students.  This disorder tends to flare up when large blocks of unallocated time present themselves to me.  Despite being fairly productive during the academic year, winter and summer breaks tend to lead me to relapse.  Faced with my latest relapse, I have started looking for a partial cure.

Every time that I move I underestimate the workload of cable and internet installers and end up with a few weeks without access to either.  Thus, it was during my recent move from apartment living to home ownership that I discovered the healing powers of a lack of distractions.  Without TV and the internet I found myself filling my large blocks of unallocated time with activities such as reading and thinking.  If this period had been longer, I even suspect that I might have turned to productivity.  The effects of No TV and Internet were much greater than those of a sugar pill, though side effects included  a disconnection with the outside world.  For example, I missed both the announcement that LeBron James was announcing his decision regarding free agency and The Decision itself.  Thankfully, my access to the outside world was restored in time for Steve Carell’s decision.

I am obviously not the first person to find that there is more time for work when less time is spent on trivial things, but what always surprises me is how trivial those things seem when I don’t have access to them.  Sure, it is nice to know what is going on in the world, but do I really need to know which elementary school basketball players are being recruited by my alma mater?  I suspect that I don’t, yet I spend large amounts of time reading about similar things when my access to the internet is unimpeded.  While I don’t want to do anything too extreme, the idea of a tech sabbath is alluring.  If only I could pull myself away from the internet long enough to turn off the cable modem…

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