~ archived since 2018 ~

My latest attempt to curb my screen addiction.

May 9, 2023

Just wanted to share my latest attempt to curb my screen addiction.

I set downtime to block my laptop and phone (apart from calls) outside office hours of 9-5.

When 5pm rolled around last night I was totally unprepared and by 9pm I was climbing the walls, no screen at all!

The evening was so so long!

I painted a painting (a totally new hobby), walked the dogs, wrote out by hand a piece of work I’d been putting off for over a week, called (on the phone) an old friend I hadn’t spoken to in ages and looked at the clock.

It was only 2030 hours! WTF. I was in crisis. What am I going to do? How am I going to sleep? I knew it was going to be hard but not this hard. I was pacing about. Randomly walking out into the garden and back into the house.

And then it hit me, I’m 40 and I remember this feeling from before I got my first smart phone, this is the feeling I’ve been running from all these years.

This almost a panic at not knowing what to do with myself.

This is why I used to spend the entire night frantically scribbling poetry in a notebook and at my peak produced and directed 3 plays, multiple short stories, and literal books of poetry in a calendar year.

And my phone is why I haven’t produced anything of note in 15 years.

But I did it. I made it. I read a book in bed. I slept well and I woke up this morning and did my yoga, meditated and sorted out my life before work.

This is it. This is what being productive feels like, and it’s scary AF but I love it!

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[–]DelRMi05 5 points6 points  (1 child) | Copy Link

I love that you're working on this. I imagine it's not easy but it's certainly inspiring. The pandemic did nothing to help this for a lot of us. Finding a hobby you love like painting is a huge win.

[–]Yesyesnaaooo[S] 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Thanks dude. Yeah it’s really been an addiction for me. And it’s taken an awful lot to get to this point.

I wish life had been different and I’d seen this before

[–]Kuato2012 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

In the days before smart phones, I had one summer where my PC died and I couldn't afford to repair it.

In that summer, I learned to play guitar, did origami, made a few carved wood sculptures, and read several of the classics which people want to have read but never make the time to read.

Good on you for taking this step!

[–]Admirable_Wasabi1840 1 point2 points  (4 children) | Copy Link

I'm impressed with your fortitude. Good on you for fighting through the urges and finding a way to channel these in a healthier way. I'm going to try to do the same. Internet off at 10:00 P.M.

[–]Yesyesnaaooo[S] 1 point2 points  (3 children) | Copy Link

How’d you get on dude?

[–]Admirable_Wasabi1840 0 points1 point  (2 children) | Copy Link

Hey u/Yesyesnaaooo
Thanks for asking,
I had a pretty big lapse last night. I eventually got of the internet and meditated around 11:30 and then tried to stay in bed but around 01:00 I jumped back on and stayed the whole night...

How are you doing this evening?

[–]Yesyesnaaooo[S] 1 point2 points  (1 child) | Copy Link


Yeah, I’m doing good but only because I got someone else to type my PIN number in and so I can’t undo my decision in moments of weakness.

I’ve realised that this is a true addiction.

I’m powerless over it.

I also know that I’ll never grow as a person as long as I can access my phone every time I need a distraction from uncomfortable thoughts.

First night of this I basically had to call a friend on the phone to distract myself, last night I couldn’t call anyone and I had difficulty sleeping.

But I figured out how to deal with it, and today I’m proud of my achievement.

Stay strong dude.

[–]Admirable_Wasabi1840 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I hear, this really is an addiction, like I feel the urge on a visceral level (which makes sense cause its something like the nervous system, hormonal system, et al at play)

Good on you for fighting through the urges/withdrawal and for being brave enough to admit your vulnerability.

I need to sign off soon too, I am going to shoot for 10PM again.

Hope your recovery is going well and know you're not alone.

[–]ChrongrariusWimble 3 points4 points  (1 child) | Copy Link

I think about this a lot. There's no real incentive to start a hobby anymore. How many amazing artists or inventors have we lost because everyone spends their time on Netflix instead?

It must be absolutely ruining us mentally, on a societal scale. No one is ever bored and alone with their thoughts anymore, because any 5 minutes of down time can be filled with scrolling memes. Those moments of stillness with no distractions are so important for getting a perspective on your life and your problems.

I'm less addicted than most my age (22) and I often don't even take my phone when I go out. But so much of daily life is online now. I have exams coming up and all my course materials are online, so that's 5-6 hours a day of unavoidable screen time. It's quite sad.

[–]Yesyesnaaooo[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

Try it for a night!

Boredom breeds creativity.

See what happens.

[–]TenOfZero 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Yeah. I would be very bored very quickly. But good on you! It's important to learn to disconnect and entertain ourselves instead of just having the entertainment shoved into our faces passively.

[–]HamburgerTrash 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I love this so much, keep it up! I want to see what you create after 15 years of screen-induced hiatus.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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