As a blogger and all round social media lover, this is definitely an area that can be a struggle. I feel like I’ve learned a lot in this area over the last while, but I know that I’m still not where I want to be with this.
The following list shares some of the things that I am wanting/trying to do to have less media in my life, I can’t say it works out perfectly every day because it sure doesn’t!
Turn off Phone Notifications
I recently switched off the sound notifications for my emails and other apps and now only get notified for texts and phone calls, both of which are not very frequent. I find this is what works for me, I know some people also turn off their text notifications but I know myself and know that I would just be constantly looking at my phone to see if a message came in, completely defeating the purpose.
No Phones at the Table
This has been a change that I’ve started in the last few weeks, when we are eating I make sure that my phone is not at the table. And for the most part if I get a message during the meal I won’t check it until we are done.
Hide Blog Stats
I’m not really sure if this actually falls into this category but I’m including it anyway. I have noticed that I go through stages of obsessing my blog stats and will open my WordPress dashboard just to check my stats for the day so I’ve changed it so it now does not show up on my dashboard when I log in, which has really made a difference for me. It’s simple enough, and it works!
No Using the Computer when Raeca is Around
This has been one of the biggest changes lately. As a result of this rule I’ve given myself I end up using the computer for a few minutes in the morning before she wakes up, and sometimes a few minutes in the evening after she goes to bed but the bulk of my writing and online work gets done when she is napping (like now!). There have been days when I’ve had to use it when she’s awake like those crazy days when she refuses to nap or gets up at 6am (which is becoming all too common).
That being said, that’s how I operate during the week, I haven’t gotten into a groove for the weekends yet because Jared is home so then often Raeca will skip her nap or him and I will do stuff like a play a game during her nap so I lose my writing time.
This has really been a game changer. I’ve almost always scheduled my blog posts and I continue to do that but now I also schedule a bunch of other things.
One thing I’ve been doing for a few months is scheduling a lot of my tweets with the Buffer app (that’s my referral link, so if you sign up using my link we both get extra features for free, whoop!). Each morning in those few minutes before Raeca is up I will buffer a few tweets about my newest post for the day, or something from my sponsors, or a quote I’ve been loving lately, that kind of stuff. That way my blog posts can be shared on Twitter and I don’t have to think about it throughout the day.
A new-to-me scheduler that I just installed on the weekend is SMS Scheduler, it’s an Android app that allows you to schedule your text messages! This is so great for me because I wake up quite a bit earlier than most of my friends and I’ll often think oh, I need to text them to ask about this or that at 6:30 in the morning but I don’t want to wake them up and then I often forget to message them. Well, no longer! Now I can schedule my messages to send whenever I want! I’ve only had it since the weekend but I envision myself using it a lot, it will be great for birthdays and all sorts of other times! Or for when my brother goes back to Bible school and is in a different time zone.
Get Rid of Cable
We haven’t done this one yet, because it’s football season you know, and we (mainly Jared) are pretty dedicated fans of the Saskatchewan Roughriders (CFL team for my American friends). The football season combined with a potential move in our future means we still have cable, for now, but it is something we’ve talked about getting rid of in the near-ish future (though the CFL goes until the end of November . . . we might have to start inviting ourselves over to people’s houses to watch the games).
Use Media Time Wisely
This is something I’ve really noticed since I have been trying to do the bulk of my computer work when Rae is not around. If she is down for a nap and I have a blog post to write, I make sure I do that first before reading any other blogs or start surfing Pinterest.
Make TV/Movie Watching a Family/Social Event
I remember reading somewhere that back in the 70’s, 80’s and really, much of the 90’s, that watching TV was a social event. Children didn’t have TV’s in the room and people weren’t spread throughout the house watching their own shows on their own screens. If a family had a TV it was usually just one (small) TV and you all sat down to watch together. This one is really easy for me because it’s really what I do anyway, I only watch something if I’m with Jared or Raeca, when I’m by myself I never think to turn the TV on, I have so many other things I would rather be doing.
What are you thinking about a life of less media? Are there areas in your life you could cut back on? A great book very much on this topic is Hands Free Mama by Rachel Macy Stafford, while it is written for mom’s it really can apply to people at any stage in life.
How do you deal with media in your home?
I’d love to hear any ideas you have for how to have less of it!