I have been living without internet at home for a couple months now, and its been a while since my last entry! So here it is. The internet is basically accessible almost anywhere these days. Our social life is online, our shopping is done online, our games are online, our banking is online…everything…is online. Its really insane when you think about how much of our lives are spent online these days. So taking a big leap of faith, my husband and I decided to get rid of internet at home, for two reasons: 1. To save $90 a month to help us pay off our debt quicker. 2. To see if we could manage and enjoy life at home without needing to be online.
There were so many things that took up our spare time in the evenings that required us being online. The BIGGEST thing, was Netflix, for sure. In the evenings we would both be so burnt out from work and commuting and attempting to cook ourselves some kind of adequate meal after arriving home at the late hour of 6pm. I’m sorry but starting to cook a meal after 6pm after each having a 8-10 hour day at work, is NOT ideal! I must admit a lot of quick fix, easy meals had become our go-to dinner time routine, it is what it is. ALL we wanted was to get on that couch as quickly as possible and throw on a mindless flick to help us wind down from our busy lives. It became so routine and so monotonous, we literally just vegged out for 3 hours every night in front of the TV. I was starting to feel like a Netflix zombie! And not only that but the constant scrolling through apps on our phones while Netflix was going in the background. Checking Facebook way more than I needed to. Youtube videos by the hundreds some days. Sometimes I would even have Netflix on my phone while laying in bed to help put me to sleep. It was madness! My brain literally became accustomed to NEEDING internet access for all these stupid little addictions that were taking up my life. Something had to change.
So that is what we did. Goodbye internet; easy access to all the addictive, convenient methods of numbing our brains! These past couple months have been hard to say the least. Weening yourself off of an addiction such as the internet, has proven to be VERY difficult. My cellular data was being eaten up faster than ever. And since we didn’t have access to Netflix we found ourselves at the movie store a lot. Basically spending close to that $90 we were supposed to be saving, on renting physical DVDs. And of course grabbing as many DVDs at the library that we could get. The addiction was very real, and I could see it so clearly now that the convenience was ripped away.
But I’m happy to say, the weening process did eventually work and we have found ourselves creating little hobbies and to-do lists that otherwise might not get done until the weekend (when we really don’t want to be doing chores…its the weekend). I have 3 houseplants now that I’m pretty devoted to trying to keep alive. Its new for me, and they aren’t the healthiest they can be I’m sure, but its a process! I found myself a couple little iPhone apps that don’t require data or internet that I can play once in a while to keep the occasional boredom at bay. I have been a bit better at cooking actual meals rather than quick fix frozen dinners. We get a lot more chores done throughout the week now that aren’t left until the weekend, leaving our weekends open and full of opportunities for fun outings! I dug out Christmas decor one evening and decked out the apartment, without distractions from the TV. I even dug out a bunch of stuff from my craft box to plan some fun little DIY projects for the upcoming winter months. We’ve been playing boardgames and both have books (more than one) on the go. Remember those things called books? With pages, and written words? And no screens whatsoever? Yeah I almost forgot about those things too! And the best thing so far that we are doing with our spare time in the evenings, is going to the gym! Our apartment building recently opened a gym for all residents that is open 24 hours a day, and we have been going at least 4 days a week! Its actually amazing. I haven’t been working out since the summer, and having this gym conveniently in our building gives us so much motivation to go and get fit without worrying about paying a gym expense. The other thing I’ve come to notice during this internet free experience is my husband and I spending more quality time together that doesn’t involve couch & tv time. We have conversations while we cooke dinner together. We both share the load with house chores. We are actually getting to bed at a decent hour every night because we aren’t stuck with our eyes glued to the TV. It’s actually great. It’s still difficult at times when we need the internet for other things like banking or paying bills etc. We just have to learn to use our time properly, and I do have internet access at work if I need it for something important. It’s definitely a process, and I am learning to adjust the amount of cellular data I use at a time to make sure I am not using it up earlier than I need to. I think this is such a great learning experience and we find more and more things to accomplish with the free time we now have without the distractions of the online world.
Right now, we unfortunately just got hooked on the TV series Game of Thrones…which for the past couple weeks has been taking up an avid amount of our free time. BUT its okay to splurge now and then if you find something you both really enjoy together. Its a show we BOTH like rather than scrolling through Netflix and each of us wanting to watch something different every time and one of us always having to sacrifice for the other. But once we get caught up on this show (thank goodness for the library having all the seasons available for free), we will get back to having more time off the screen. So this is it so far! I’m hoping it will only get better from here and I can tell you about more things we are doing with our time! I’m hoping to make DIY projects a common thing this winter 🙂 Please feel free to comment with any DIY project ideas! I’m all ears!!!