As some of my twitter followers may be aware (I prefer to call them ‘devotees’), I’ve been thinking of turning over a new leaf. One of my devotees, Graham (oh, do visit his wonderful blog, Crow World. There’s a link to it in my blogroll) pointed out to me that maybe my TV and internet preponderance might be resulting in some frustrations. I thought about this long and hard and realised Graham was right!
On a saturday I rarely get dressed until 2pm. Why? Pure procrastination. I wake up, throw my dressing gown on, blunder down the stairs, and put the kettle on as my computer hums into it’s blue welcome glow. Then I sit, transfixed like a cat by a washing machine, by the box of delights. Searching for music, scouring blogs, watching 4OD. At some point someone will knock at the door and I will shamefacedly open the door to my mother.
Why the procrastination? What exactly am I avoiding?
Not sure. In 2001 it was very clear. In 2001 I started my internet career as ‘Angel’. At that time, I’d embarked on my doctorate and I’d just got the internet with unlimited access. No more modem bing-boing-bing-boing and shut it down after 10 seconds after you recieved all your e-mail for excrusicating fear of the spiralling costs. This was proper internet access in all it’s discussion-board-msn-messneger-yahoo-chat-room glory. What was I avoiding then? Simple. Course work.
Course work. My doctorate would have been amazing if it wasn’t for the coursework. It was relentless. Difficult. Overwhelming. BORING. So avoidance reasons were clearer.
But what now?What am I avoiding?
Shit boring jobs around the house. The eternal trudgery of the home owner. Phone a gas fitter. Put up a curtain pole. Change the sheets. Clear up after my boyfriend. Once you’ve done most of the jobs, you breathe in. You breathe out. It needs doing again. The internet is my retreat into a virtual fantasy life where cleaning doesn’t exist.
Getting dressed. Not in a pervy way, mind. Who are you? Stefan Dennis?
Oh it’s such a ridiculous faff being a woman. If I get off the computer, that means I have to get dressed. If I have to get dressed, I probably should shower, and shave. Oh, it’s the weekend, so I should fake tan, as i’m off out that night. If I fake tan, I’ve got to exfoliate…If I’m going out I need to wash my hair…and then where do I fit in going the gym to make sure I look alright in these stupid clothes I own.
You can see why I procrastinate. Maintaining your appearance as a woman is a full time job. When you’re not in work, you’re tirelessly involved in your unpaid, merciless occupation of ‘looking attractive’. It’s the hardest job in the world. Even if you persue this thankless job, with the full vigour of the paranoid, you still can’t escape the unkind comments that someone will throw in your path.
Procrastination was Hamlet’s fatal flaw, was it not? But is it mine?
I’m limiting my internet access to half an hour a day to see how my life changes. What I can achieve. How my mood changes. How my relationships change.
I’ve some simple rules
1. half an hour internet a day. I can check twitter on my HTC on my lunch break also.
2. Go to bed 11.30 every night, rather than 12.30. Maybe tiredness is a maintenance factor of procrastination, avoidance and therefore computer use.
3. Excercise comes before computer use. Computer use comes from disatisfaction with the self. Avoidance of getting dressed, being disappointed etc. Maybe increased exercise will boost self esteem and self efficacy, thus less need for a retreat into a virtual life.
Will report back on progress tomorrow.
Your thoughts are, as always, valued and welcomed.
ps. It’s only day 2 and I’ve done 2 blog posts. With excessive internet use, I could never get inspired enough to blog. I think there’s something in this!