Thursday, January 05, 2012

Internet Temptation

Remember the Lay's potato chip slogan, "Betcha can't eat just one?"  They presume that once you taste the salty goodness, feel the crunch, a single chip won't satisfy, and you'll be tempted to keep popping chips into your mouth...and probably more than a single serving's worth.

Nowadays we face a huge temptation during the workday: the Internet.  From Facebook to Twitter to online shopping to reading articles/blogs, watching videos/movies/TV shows and playing games, many of us could entertain or educate ourselves for hours.  Throw in emails and texting, and you could fritter your whole day away.  You could spend more money than you planned because of the ease of one-click purchasing or buy things you don't really need because the sale price is so low.

Often we say, "I"ll just check Facebook."  Or, "I'll just read the latest about [current issue].  We make one comment or click on one link, then we might need to comment on the comment or click another link.  Soon we're so engrossed that we might not notice how much time has gone by. 
Some sources say that too much time on the Internet can negatively impact our brains.  There's a lot of interest in whether it's actually an addiction or disorder. How do we resist the temptation of all things online?  Or at least stick to a certain amount of time and not let it interfere with productivity?

Some of us might succeed with the work before play approach, and reward themselves with online time at the end of the day.  Some might allocate a certain amount of time, say during a break or lunch, and use a timer.  Others might not be able to rely on their self-control, and could benefit from an accountability partner or utilize an app such as keepmeout and SelfControl, which block you from accessing sites you choose at certain times.

Other ideas:

How to spend less time online
Spend less time on Twitter and Facebook
How to spend less time on e-mail

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