As the world wide web continues to spread its wings everyday and reach new and obscure places, internet users continue to develop it further and make it more desirable everyday. Today you can find a 7-year-old child playing games on his laptop and a 16-year-old teen spending hours everyday on sites like MySpace and Facebook – even to chat with friends they just spent 8 hours with in school!
There is no doubt about the fact that the spread of internet has brought endless opportunities and has been a great help to mankind. But as we know, with every positive thing there is some negativity attached. I think the primary demerit of the internet today is that it offers so much that it becomes irresistible and has an overpowering effect on our day-to-day life. We seem to pass 15 hours in front of computer without blinking and don’t realize it. It seems that MySpace and YouTube is more important then going out and having a chat or playing on the field with friends. This is nothing but a sort of an addiction to this virtual world, something which has become much more than indispensable.
So here are some tips which will help you overcome your obsession for the virtual world. Because you know that excess of anything, whether good or bad, is bad.
Imagine life without the internet
I think this is the first step towards overcoming that obsession. Just sit and think for a while that what would you do if suddenly a deadly virus crashes everything. Sounds impossible, huh ? But what if something like that does happen. I know people like me who work full time online would be screwed :-). But really, is the internet indestructible?
If you think it’s not and it may perish some day like every human being, then why are you obsessed with it? Just treat it as an important but a non-living object which is a part of your life, but not the ‘ heart ‘ of your life. Whatever important stuff you’ve got stored on the internet, whether it’s emails, pictures, etc., get a backup. That’ll help to eliminate the fear that if you don’t go online for a day you might lose something.
Go out and get a life
Grab every opportunity to meet people in person rather than meeting them online for a chat. That’ll give you an excuse to leave your desk and take time out.
A Day offline
If you spend hours everyday online, then try to go offline for one day in the week, even if you’re home. It won’t be easy and you would keep getting a fierce urge to just log on and check your email or your website stats or anything which you do everyday online. But be firm and restrict yourself from touching the computer or even going online on your mobile phone.
In fact this would be a real test of the fact whether you are actually addicted to the internet. If things like television, newspapers, etc. are successfully able to distract you and keep you offline for a day, then it’s time to celebrate !
A Vacation offline
If you really think that you are obsessed with the internet to the point that it is disrupting your normal life and having an adverse effect on your health, then just take a vacation and don’t carry your laptop with you. Now vacations are meant to keep you away from everything, but those who are addicted to the internet, won’t spare their vacations either. Hence you should make sure that there is no way for you to go online during your vacation. You may find it weird initially, when you can’t use something which you are so heavily dependent on but slowly you’ll realize that you’re going good on your vacation without it too. And this realization could end your obsession for it.
It’s weird that a person like me, who earns his living full time online as a blogger and freelance writer, talks about internet addiction. Well, it’s not that I don’t spend hours online, but I am conscious of the fact that internet addiction can be bad and hence am always checking myself that I use it only when required and don’t get obsessed with it.
So are you addicted to the internet ? If yes then how has it affected your life so far ? And how do you plan to get rid of the addiction ?