Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Computer-induced ADD

Time is another one of my obsessions. I waste more time pondering what in the world I’ve done with it. Dh says I just think too much in general. But honestly, have you taken time to analyze where it goes?

In the old days of intense mothering (where some of you currently and seemingly forever reside), one day morphed into the next as I endured those 24/7 shifts seven days a week with no clue such a thing as “free time” even existed. Back then it was a good thing to be overseas where real life was busy, and we had no such thing as telephone and junk mail, not to mention sports or other extra-curricular activities for the kids. I could focus on the little priorities I was raising.

Nowadays I find I have developed a case of adult-onset ADD. I tend to flit from one time waster to another. Having Internet has contributed to the problem. I can “quickly” check in on Facebook, mostly looking for news from my children, and find myself fully sucked in an hour later, praying for this, “liking” that, and wishing a dozen friends a happy birthday.

Then there is Pinterest. If you haven’t discovered Pinterest yet, don’t go near it unless you are highly disciplined, and can stay there only for 10 minutes of inspiration and relaxation. For me, I find way too many recipes and craft ideas that I know full well I will never try, but I file them away for a hypothetical day in the future when I might.

Being the frugal missionary, I was delighted with a link on Pinterest for painting upholstered furniture. That would be so much simpler than shopping for fabric, finding someone to do the work, hauling the furniture to the city, etc. Right? I wasted the next hour reading blog after blog about how to do this “simple” job. Then I discovered that the main ingredient I needed was something I would never be able to find in Mexico. Another good idea that will come to nothing.

One final time eater is my Kindle. I hesitate to say anything, because I honestly LOVE my Kindle. I have several versions of the Bible on it, plus several devotional books I am using for 2012. The trouble is that I fritter my time away hunting for online bargains and freebies to read. For a while I was downloading so many free books, it was a full-time job just to organize them all.

The biggest blessing I discovered this past week is that I can borrow books for free with Amazon Prime. Now that’s cool. I am only allowed one book at a time. That forces me to focus and actually finish one book before I download the next one.

Having Amazon Prime is worth it for me, since I tend to procrastinate on ordering things (another symptom of my ADD-ishness) until I am forced to pay for second day shipping or risk wasting further time writing emails to track down packages that inevitably arrive too late.

Somehow I picture the rest of you happily occupied with real people and projects, well organized and self-disciplined, ministering to others full-time. For your sake, I hope you are not in a computer-induced attention deficit mode. If you are, may 2012 be a year we both find balance between worthwhile and wasted time.

IRL* Striving to regain control over my time.


  1. I've been reading here and there about Pinterest, and now based on what you say, I know I DEFINITELY better not go there! It is true, it's so easy to fritter away TIME! I'm TRYING to discipline myself to check facebook only twice a day...(for just a few minutes...)

  2. I can so identify with you and with Olive Tree. I set the kitchen timer to discipline myself to get up and do something important--like dishes, dinner prep, etc. And like Olive Tree, I don't dare look into Pinterest!

    Thanks for commisserating with us today!


  3. I've actually hoped that I can access my Pinterest boards in heaven! Ha! I think there's a good chance...

  4. Olive and Linda, I think you are wise, but secretly, Suz, I suspect our homes in heaven are the closest we will come to our dream houses we design on Pinterest. No need for the pins, we'll have the real thing.

    1. Ha! Of course our homes will be fab. But will we remember all of the projects and decorating we always wanted to do if we can't take a look at our pins? I suppose we won't need them to be creative, huh! I love dreaming about heaven...

  5. I have wanted to ask to be invited to Pinterest, but this is exactly my fear. I hear you about FB and Kindle. I have NEVER had the discipline to put a good book down, so I usually stay up all night if I have to in order to finish. That messes seriously with my next day, ya know?

    Then, I just signed up for Twitter and afterward felt a noose tightening around my neck. Amen to your last line.

  6. Thankfully, I have one computer at work and one at home and while I know I can access everything on my work one, I don't. Part of it is discipline and part of it is that my work computer is a shared computer that half the time two people are on with the same screen - so that helps.

    I do deal with my normal ADD by just structuring my day so I do some of this and then some of that and then a bit of that. I'm productive, but not bored!

  7. It is so good to know I'm not alone. Facebook is my downfall, but it is also a really valid link to my other "home" and the lives that are going on there while I'm at my overseas "home".

    As a teacher I keep hearing about Pinterest and I'm sure it's got some great stuff but I don't think I'm disciplined enough to manage it at the moment.

    Your thoughts about your Kindle are helpful. I'm seriously considering getting one, since getting decent books, especially Christian ones, here is challenging and expensive, but I need to keep your thoughts in mind.

    Thanks for an informative and constructive post. It's always good to know we're not alone in our temptations.

  8. That's just it, Karen - we NEED FB to help us stay connected with family and even churches back home. I couldn't "unplug" the computer even if I wanted to. It's a matter of keeping it under control.

    Ilona, I'll send you an invite if you want to check it out. It's a great place to browse ten minutes a day or so for inspiration. More than that, it eats time.

  9. Karen, I share a computer, too, so my times of weakness are mostly when dh is away.

  10. So well put, Jamie Jo. Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a note of encouragement.

    I normally blog more often that I have lately. Maybe it's because my Christmas gift was a Kindle. :) Love it love it. I too need Facebook to keep up with my family.

    And then there is texting which I've had to learn so I can keep in touch with my daughter and her family. So many things to keep us jumping from one thing to another.

    I also decided 2012 was the year to do less computer time, less or no TV time, and more reading and studying.

    Keep on keeping on

  11. Amen, Janet, though I would add writing to my list and maybe less reading. I found a poem this morning that made me think of you. I'll pop back over to your blog to make sure you see it there. Bless you!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...