This post is part of the Minimalist Experiment, in which I am clearing away the clutter so that I can focus on the truly important aspects of my life.
I spend far too much time on the computer. Sometimes I’m being productive: writing blog posts, commenting on other blogs, researching, or doing homework. Often, however, I’m just killing time. I can look back over the day and realize that I’ve spent hours doing nothing productive at all.
I decided to combat this in three different ways.
- Organize my computer better
- Limit my sessions on the computer
- Leave the laptop at home
These three ideas will all help me to spend less time on the computer, time that I can spend on worthwhile parts of my life. I will be able to work on my reading list, spend more time with my wife, and complete some of the projects on my todo list.
Organize my computer better
I’ve talked about this before, but apparently I needed to do it again. I found a new minimalist background to help unclutter my desktop. I discovered that I had let far too many icons creep back onto my desktop, so I created a folder called “desktop clutter” and moved everything into it. Now there are only two icons visibile, the Recycle Bin and the Desktop Clutter. It’s such a relief to have a nice, calm image with only a few distractions!
Limit my sessions on the computer
Part of the reason I spend so much time on the computer is because I check it randomly throughout the day. I sit down “just to check my email,” get distracted, and before I know it I’ve lost an hour. To help stop that, I’m only going to get online three times a day. Once in the morning, once in the evening, and a random time during the day. this should be more than often enough to do email, read all of the feeds in my RSS reader, and check the online comics that I read. Ideally, I want to knock off one of these sessions, so that I only get online twice a day. We’ll see how this week goes, and go from there.
Leave the laptop at home
I don’t like lugging the laptop around all the time. That sucker gets heavy! I started out the school year with it at home, and then started carrying it for one of my classes. Realistically, I don’t need it. Today it’s sitting at home, where it belongs. I am writing this on one of the computers in the school’s library. All of the files that I might need are saved on my thumbdrive.
Without the laptop, my backpack weighs half as much. I am able to carry a smaller bag, so it’s more maneuverable. I’m more likely to pull out my book or sketchpad and do something productive with my time.
This is an area where I will have a hard time. I know that it will be worth it, however, so I’m going to make it work. More time that I can spend with my wife is well worth any inconvenience!