I am starting this journal because I want to manage my internet addiction. Today is my 30th birthday and instead of celebrating, I’m taking the time to reflect and make plans for change because I am miserable about my life. I have no job, live with my parents, have very few friends and suffer from depression and social anxiety. I believe that my mental health problems are the reason why I have drowned myself in internet escapism since I was a teenager.
Restricting internet use is one part of a bigger plan to help me manage anxiety and try to live an independent healthy life. I want to find a job and earn money, start seeing a therapist, meditate and go to meetups but I can’t do that when I spend most of my energy online.
Social media and the internet in general are the easier options to distract me and not think about my problems, so when I engage, I can’t stop myself and waste hours and hours. The annoying thing is that I am aware of what I’m doing but I can’t seem to stop myself.
I can’t go on like this and I want to make a concerted effort to change things because I know I can have a better life, manage my mental health problems and have better relationship.
For the next week I will restrict my internet usage. I don’t want to go cold turkey because it’s not realistic, I have an art blog on Tumblr so I will be posting on their and browsing the site, therefore I want to stop using these sites on the weekdays and engage only on the weekends.
I use mainly AO3 for reading fanfics, Twitter, Youtube, Reddit, and Tumblr. I go on AO3 on my phone or tablet which means I end up reading fanfic till ridiculous o’clock under the covers. It’s pure escapism and I can get lost in fanfic for hours. Youtube, Twitter and Tumblr, I have the apps on my phone and browse first thing in the morning. Guess it makes me feel connected because I’m socially isolated. Reddit I occasionally go on my computer.
On my laptop I’m usually drawing so I don’t really go on social media apps but I sometimes get sucked in when streaming shows and end up bingeing a few episodes of whatever I’m watching.
I will not go on Youtube/Twitter/AO3/Reddit/Tumblr during the weekdays. I have a routine set up involving Meditation, light exercise and looking for jobs.
Since I need to find a job I have no choice but to use the Internet on my Laptop. I have a forest extension on chrome which has black listed Youtube/Reddit/Tumblr/AO3 etc.
I plan to delete Tumblr, Youtube apps on my phone and Ipad as well as Spotify because I listen to a lot of podcasts which are distracting
I will allow myself to indulge as much as I want on the weekends, but as long I can refrain from using it during the weekdays and set up a badly needed routine in my life then I know I will have achieved something, and it is possible for me to be disciplined and proactive in making positive changes in my life.