I decided on pretty short notice that I was going to quit the internet. (Here’s why.)
I’m basically doing a techno-version of ‘sober October.’ No email, no Facebook, no Messenger, no Twitter, no blogging, no research, no Amazon orders, no TED talks, no binge reading interesting articles and clickbait listicles.
I’ll definitely come back to email. Come November, I’ll need to pay my October credit card balance online.
Quit the Internet To-Do List
This list would be even longer if I were leaving the internet for good. Those with smartphones would have an extra hurdle. And not everyone’s internet-quitting list would require saying goodbye to their blog readers and social media followers. But if you want to quit, too, hopefully it helps you get organized.
1. Life Logistics
- make sure my credit cards won’t come due while I’m away. Schedule payments as necessary.
- write down my bank balances so I can track my spending by hand
- change my Nokia cell phone to unlimited plan
- go through my gmail calendar and transfer it to paper. Be sure anything internet related on the calendar gets done or can be put off until November.
- run a cloud backup
- let new local friends know our internet-based communications need to be switched to phone
- get the offline international call re-routing instructions for my google voice account
- make a final Amazon order of all the purchases I’ve been putting off
- set a reminder to order eggs by phone on Tuesdays since I won’t be emailing
- turn on a gmail auto-responder
2. Information Access
- print out my google voice contacts
- write down time zone information for the people I communicate with around the world
- get a map of Tucson where I’ll be spending half my offline time
- print tickets to the acrobat show I’m seeing
- print receipts for appointments I’ve pre-paid online
- print my Seattle flight itinerary
- look up public transit directions to my friends’ house in Seattle
- look up whether or not the milk that will get delivered while I’m in Seattle can be frozen and then turned into ice cream and yogurt.
- look up recipes for said ice cream and yogurt
- print instructions for activities I’ve been wanting to do with nephews
- print directions for camping and hiking trip with nephew
- write a blog post explaining where I went
- be inspired and then write another blog post explaining what it takes to quit the internet
- email readers to say goodbye
- tweet the blog post to serve as an “away” message
- tell my accountability partners & coding guru I’ll be gone
- update pages with high “engagement” so new readers know I’ll be away and not responding to their comments
- compile monthly stats report
- tell video collaboration project members I’ll only be available via phone and text
- put my “why I quit the internet” post on Medium because I’ve been wanting to write a Medium post and I wish people talked more about the themes running through this explainer
It’s a lot to do in 72 hours. I’m at t-minus 35, and I don’t feel like I’m quite halfway there.
Wish me luck?!