WEEK THIRTY TWO: (the Prequel)
Personally this journey has been amazing.
In truth I’ve enjoyed every minute of this journey and without listing all the great changes and things I’ve found about myself (seriously we would be here for hours, ahem) I had a very interesting chat with myself on Sunday morning over a cup of coffee or two in the living room of our apartment…
VOICE: It’s been good hasn’t it?
I SMILE AND NOD TO MYSELF
VOICE: Lots of sweeping changes.
MARK: You know it.
VOICE: Certainly no more autopilot.
MY SMILE BECOMES EVEN GREATER, STRECTCHING MY FACIAL MUSCLES TO THEIR LIMIT
VOICE: This latest experiment in giving up the internet was super special.
MARK: I know.
VOICE: You only access your e-mails and internet once a week and you don’t really think you’re missing out either.
MARK: I feel great about my decision, I’m no longer a slave to ‘it’.
VOICE: Aye, no one can deny that. You’ve stuck to it too. Well apart from that one e-mail you sent thanking someone for a very special thought.
MARK: I couldn’t wait until Wednesday. The gift they sent me was very touching and required an immediate response.
VOICE: Very true. What now then?
MARK: What do you mean?
VOICE: Well we’ve been thinking…
MARK: Whose we?
VOICE: The rest of us inside your head.
I LOOK AT MYSELF SOMEWHAT PERPLEXED
VOICE: Let’s not start doubting what we already know; there are loads of us in here. Funny enough Mr Self Doubt seems to have disappeared. Someone suggested he’s gone away on holiday while others have said he’s left for good…
I SMILE KNOWING HE NO LONGER HAS A PLACE IN MY MIND
VOICE: Anyway the point is, you only access your e-mails and internet on Wednesday’s and we were thinking; does that mean you’re on autopilot when it comes to this decision you’ve made?
MARK: I’m no longer a slave to it…
VOICE: We know that, we were just thinking you don’t want it to become something set in stone because surely that defeats the object of not living on autopilot? We were thinking… Hang on, just wait there one minute. Voice Two come here a minute…
VOICE TWO (THICK SCOUSE ACCENT FOR COMEDY VALUE): Alright lad how’s it going?
VOICE: Tell him what we were all talking about the other day.
VOICE TWO: Oh yeah, we were saying we know you’ve had a good think about only using the internet on a Wednesday but you are kind of like setting yourself up for a fall. We agree in principle it’s a great idea and we agree you are defo no longer a slave to the beast that is the internet but the thing is if you make rules like; I’ll only do this on that day, I’ll only do that on this day, the thing is you’re back on autopilot, like.
MARK: I know what you’re trying to do and I won’t fall for it.
THEN THERE WAS A PAUSE AND THEN I REALISED THEY WERE RIGHT. A SMILE CRACKED ACROSS MY FACE AND INSIDE I CHUCKLED
To deny oneself a pleasure or knowledge that could lead to personal growth is stupid. To control something that wasn’t good for oneself is masterful and respectful to oneself.
The truth is I really didn’t miss the internet (I still don’t) but to deny myself the opportunity to read e-mails and respond to them and to put my ‘wake up’ experiment on hold isn’t so clever. This last week and a half has taught me self-control. I have looked deep into something that wasn’t good for me, I cut it out of my life and I feel better for that. But I came to the decision that if I was to get a letter through the post that I knew was important and I didn’t open it and just waited for a set day in the week to open it this just didn’t make sense. So on Sunday I decided to reintroduce e-mails and the immediate access to the latest ‘wake up’ experiment back into my world. I need to show respect for friends and family contacting me through the electronic age and not miss out on any fun that is ‘wake up’. I have separated from the internet with the exception of e-mail and ‘wake up’. I am no longer a slave to the internet, it is my servant.
VOICE: So you’re back on the internet then?
MARK: No, I’m going to read my e-mails when I want to and look at the last ‘wake up’ experiment.
VOICE: Are you sure you’re not going to look at the internet?
MARK: You can keep your internet it’s not for me I’m still growing. However I would like to catch up on my ‘wake up’ experiment and e-mails. And guess what? It’s my decision, I am my own master!
VOICE TWO (WHISPERS): I wonder what Sarah and Bobby think about that?
MARK: SHUT UP!