The idea popped into my head for the first time three years ago. How would it be if my new year’s resolution was to leave the internet for a year? It seemed impossible. It still does. But this year I’ve decided to take the plunge. My landline and internet connection will both disappear on 27th December.
I have to admit that I did panic when I sent the email confirming the closure of my account. Suddenly the idea seemed as ludicrous to me as it did to everyone else. How would I do my banking? What if I decided to move and needed to hunt for a job or new home? How would I keep the blog going? Could I really survive without Netflix, online shopping and constant access to my emails? I began to hope that the email would get lost in transit. Technology is fallible right?
Well, no, in this case apparently not but, by the time it was all confirmed, something rather strange had happened. I had begun to feel excited about my year offline.
Now I have to be honest and manage your expectations. I am not saying that I will never go on the internet. I still want to blog and will need to check my emails once in a while. But I won’t have access to the internet at home nor on my mobile phone, which is a prehistoric device with no smart capabilities at all! For an internet addict like me, this is a big life change.
In preparation, I have deleted my Facebook account – yes deleted, not just deactivated – which has been with me for around seven years. I deleted my Amazon account too, which has been with me even longer, and I cancelled my Netflix account. To begin with these changes felt a little terrifying and I nearly had a complete meltdown when I needed an old address and realised that I’d been using my now-deleted Amazon account as my address book! But having got through the initial panic, I am beginning to think this might be rather a good idea!
As I said, I do want to keep the blog going (via the internet at the library, which I’ll access once a week) and I will spend five minutes on Twitter once a week, possibly even scheduling some Tweets to come out throughout the coming week. I am not completely rejecting online life because it has a lot to offer.
This year alone it has allowed me to organise a long-overdue catch-up with two friends, introduced me to bullet journals, beautiful music (such as Sophie Lowe’s Trust), talented content creators (such as Tom Rosenthal) and allowed me to watch inspiring, heart-warming and educational documentaries (such as The Watchmaker’s Apprentice and Mission Blue). Indeed, one of the main inspirations for this year was Dave Erasmus’ experiment in living ON+OFF Grid, which he documented on YouTube. I talk a bit more about Erasmus inspired me in this post and highly recommend you check out his YouTube series or film, Once Around the Sun.
I’d love to know whether you ever consider limiting your online life and, if so, what your experiences have been. Let me know your thoughts below!