I think about the internet all the time, I also think about taking a break from the internet all the time.
This isn’t an announcement about me taking some time off, it’s just something that I’ve been thinking a lot about recently and I want to talk about.
My job is online. My life is online. I don’t see a distinction between IRL and URL anymore; all of it is real life. The idea of going a day without the internet or without my phone doesn’t sound appealing at all. I also wouldn’t say I’m addicted to my phone (maybe I’m in denial) but even though I always have it on me, I’m not checking it constantly and sometimes I do feel like throwing it across the room and running away from everything beeping at me.
More and more recently I’ve been wanting to run away from it, completely cut myself off from digital civilisation and just relax.
There’s a lot of anxiety that we feel around our devices – push notifications of horrible news, will they/won’t they text me back?, trolls on Twitter, likes on Instagram, does anyone even give a shit about me?! I really do think that everyone gets these feelings to varying degrees. But it’s fine, the internet is amazing and I love social media so you deal with a little bit of stress because on the whole it’s worth it.
But I just need to know. My curiosity is getting stronger and stronger each day and I need to know what it feels like to completely unplug. I keep saying that I need a holiday. And you might be thinking, ‘but Hannah, you go travelling all the time!’ Exactly, “travelling”. When I go away it’s always so full-on with friends and exploring and no real time to just chill out and rest. I worked out that the last time I had a holiday that just involved a pool, a beach, good food and a fuck-ton of books was 5 years ago. Fives years ago. I’m dying to, my body is begging me to, my brain is craving it so hard. Please.
All I’m asking for is to lie in the sun for a week, to eat good food, go swimming and read and read and read. Maybe one day I’ll go on a bike ride or explore a local town but for the most part I want to do nothing. But I can’t. I’m scared to leave the internet for too long. I have a wall that’s stopping me from doing it and the wall is built on fear.
- I’m scared I’ll miss important news/events/memes/jokes
- I’m worried that people will forget about me
- It might sabotage my career
- I think you won’t even notice I’ve gone
I thought maybe I could pre-film videos and schedule them and schedule loads of tweets and Facebook posts but I’d want to see the reaction, I’d want to read and reply to comments. And you can’t schedule things on Instagram, and then what about snapchat!? I could pay someone to look after all my social media and keep it ticking over but who in this world do I trust that much to feel relaxed with them in control of my passwords, my image, my audience and my voice? No-one.
So this is my dilemma. My first world problem, if you will. If I had a different job maybe I would find it so much easier just to drop everything. Can I take a week off work? I don’t even know what that feels like.
What are your thoughts on taking a break from the internet? Have you ever done it? How did it feel? Please give me advice in the comments!