Ever-decreasing circles of time

I have been head-scratching here for the last few weeks about how on earth I can keep up with everything online, and have a life.

This weekend, I gave myself the gift of time: I left Twitter and Facebook. Well, not completely, I still have the accounts but both of them have a message to say to contact me through gmail if needed.

I am left with Flickr, WordPress and gmail… I think I can cope with that. The journey has been typical of all forays into any kind of new experience/hobby:

  1. Manic enjoyment of the thing
  2. Discovery and exploration
  3. Adoption into routine
  4. Frustration at limitations
  5. Divorce

It feels a bit weird – I mean being the complete insomniac I am, I am awake here at 4.30am, perfect time for me to be Tweeting with those in different time zones. Instead, I am going to have a peppermint tea, catch up with my GoogleReader stuff (which probably needs a cull as well), then read a book.


15 responses

  1. Computers are the friend of insomnia. I’m not sure that insomnia is improved by things that make it more easy though. I’ve been trying to implement a group announcement system for flexible New Deal bidders all night, to provide a means of collating and filtering the cacophony that erupts when 400 organisations spam each other en masse through a public list of email addresses. Sadly my leet technical skills have failed me and the dawn is calling me to bed. Maybe I should advise them all to join Twitter.

  2. But who’s going to laugh at my Facebook status updates now? 🙂

    I know what you mean, social networking be it real world or virtual demands attention and time and the problem is that it is always easy to be tempted by the interesting chat about building bearproof public access terminal for national parks happening over there.

    For those of us whose personal energy management relies on a virtuous circle between times of being noisy and times of being quiet the panopticon of the online world can be a knackering thing indeed.

    As a recovering insomniac myself you might enjoy this – http://www.abebooks.co.uk/servlet/BookDetailsPL?bi=1040754615&searchurl=sortby%3D3%26sts%3Dt%26tn%3Dnight%2Bthoughts%26x%3D0%26y%3D0

  3. Mark, you promised me you were making a book of your facebook updates. It is your Boing Boing stream with comment that keeps me most entertained – send me them 🙂

  4. I will copy you in on the bestest ones. And now back to arguing with my wii fit which says that I am “unbalanced”. Who has it been talking to?

  5. As a sometimes early riser, but a tetley drinker at this time of day, I share your concern. Luckily the twitter episode for me was a week, and no withdrawal on departure.

    However google reader does get bigger and bigger. What would be cool is if google allowed you to run a search of your feeds with all their other subscribers, and you could see if you had a similarly sad twin or triplets. As a twin, I probably should not be saying that – sorry bro.

  6. Morning Alex… I have just spent three blissfully quiet hours on here with my Google reader, book and tea (PG Tips today)! I am sure it is possible to run one of the searches you suggest, but not through Google. Today is going to see a rather rash cull of my Reader feeds.

  7. Can someone help me by explaining why I might need to use Google Reader, when the RSS feeds I’m interested in already appear in Outlook and IE7? TIA.

  8. Hi Emma, thanks for the response. I was venting more than asking for assistance – I’m using Drupal, and quickly discovering that the easiest way to find someone who can do Drupal is to learn php myself.

    That statement was also venting.

    Do you know much about the Open Knowledge meeting tonight? I’m thinking of heading over, but haven’t been to one before so curious on other people’s views.

  9. list of the stages of involvement could be applied to many things in life…. how do you stretch the “discovery and exploration” to a relationship to keep it fresh and allow you to skip past the frustrations which are always there but you should never allow yourself to see.
    On the tea front, the pride of… with a string attached. Don’t really know if that says anything about me but I am on one cup a day to wean me off coffee.

  10. What makes your posts so compelling is the honesty and the way you lay yourself bare.
    Your journey is so true of many of us.
    Bizarrely (fate or whatevah) I have read this post after your post of 30th April and now have that feeling of loss when you look back a picture of something later to be destroyed, damaged or broken. Those 232 feeds now reduced to just 5.
    I am a pain for hanging on to clutter for its own sake and admire you for what you have done … for the right reasons to just the people you need.
    We all have too much … work, posesions, labels, ego … back to basics, friends, love and sanity … is what matters in decreasing things to the minimum.
    This must be serious, blogging like this without the aid of red wine and at 1:30am

    Tea – Cafedirect Fairtrade

  11. What I admire is your compelling journey and the way you lay your self bare, but its so clear that I learn.
    I’ve read this after the post where you culled your 232 feeds down to 5 (don’t normally miss a post – fate or something) and I feel like I’m looking a picture of something before it was destroyed, broken or thrown away.
    Well done, we all carry too much for the sake of it (work, money, labels, ego, arrogance) but what matters when stripped away is quality friends, relationships and ability of self to survive.
    Onwards and upwards – you are a brave person!
    Why am I blogging like this – without Red Wine and at 1:30am ! Dunno
    BTW – Tea – Cafedirect Fairtrade!

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