Whew! That was a long time to go without the Internet!
I have just returned from a warrior’s journey.
As some of you may or may not know, I’m currently serving in the US Army Reserves. My travels this past month led me to the beautiful state of Wisconsin. I’ll admit, I wasn’t sure what to expect heading into it, but it’s been some of the most fun I’ve had all year. Great people, great times, and great weather (I like thunderstorms, and the Midwest puts on a fantastic show!). My only complaint any of it was this – I had no Internet access the entire time there.
Before you think this is a problem, let me ‘splain somethin’.
I DID have my Blackberry, which allowed me to at least check up on emails and a few Twitter feeds, but by and large, I had no access to the REAL online world (because Blackerry uses the half-Internet).
So what was I supposed to do with all of this “down” time?
I thoroughly enjoyed my Internet vacation!
I’ve had a similar type of “problem” happen like this in the past. By not being connected to the information-abundant, never-sleeping Internet, I actually had an opportunity to live in the moment, and I loved it!
Meaningful relationships were built, memories were made, and stories will be shared from this past month. No regrets there.
As a matter of fact, a recurring conversation kept coming up amongst me and my fellow soldiers: taking time to un-plug.
Take time to un-plug
Smart phones, laptops, Internet cafes, iPads…..it seems like our access to the WWW is all around us and inescapable. Time to exercise a little discipline!
Leave the phone at home, or turn it off. Shut off the computer and don’t open it up until the next day. Spend time doing the things that are going to gain you life experiences and build memories.
When I was a younger lad, I used to enjoy MTV’s “Unplugged” shows. What made the show so special was that it allowed musicians to have a very informal time with their fans. The artist sat in the middle of the room and the fans were in a circle on the outside looking in. There was no backstage area. It was 360 degrees of Nirvana, Jay-Z, Seal, or whoever was on that show. We can learn a lesson from MTV here: taking time to un-plug is necessary to get a transparent view of what’s going on. Not only is it necessary for the artist to be able to relax a little bit, but it gives the viewer (in this case, the viewer is yourself, as the idea I’m presenting here is an inward look into yourself) a chance to see who the artist (you) really is.
What matters most to you? Take some time to do THAT. Maybe on a Sunday, maybe on another day of the week. A good friend told me recently that she uses the Crossfit Rest Day for her day to unplug. She said, “It’s worth it physically, emotionally, and spiritually.”
Enjoy your vacation!
Lastly, a call to action:
In the comments, I’d like for y’all to share some things that you do to help you unplug, and also what you do once you ARE unplugged.