The internet. A place where it is said that we spend more than 27% of our year on. Chatting in instagram group chats, binge watching your favourite tv series, and scrolling through your Facebook feed. But was is the point?
In July, I was given the opportunity to spend 5 weeks with 39 other girls on the picturesque Great Barrier Island. One challenge we had on the island was living the entirety of the experience without the internet or devices. Before leaving it sounded like it would be hard to cope without them, since we had spent so much of our time at home online.
This camp was the first time I had ever got homesick. I found myself pinpointing all the things I missed at home and how much I wanted to be back, how I wished I could just pick up my phone and talk to someone. Thinking about this, made the first week difficult to manage alone. I focused on not being with my family instead of looking at the advantages of having so much time to myself on the island.
The first week passed, and I found out there was a piano room upstairs in the community lounge. This is when I learned the most about working independently and opened up a new door of creativity within myself. I spent every afternoon writing songs, playing the piano, reading deep into a book, journaling and took the time to set goals and self reflect. I indulged myself in the nature that surrounded me and got to make the most out of the amazing opportunity that I had been given. I didn’t properly realise that being on my phone had been holding me back from living my life to the fullest.
Not being on your phone in moments of boredom not only stops you from wasting time, but it can open up a creative side of you, that can lie dormant in the technology laden world we live in today.
With teenagers having the attention span of 10 - 20 minutes, focusing on getting things done can be pretty difficult if we don’t set ourselves up in the right mindset.
Here are some ways that help me stay focused and get me into a good working mindset:
- Putting my phone and any other distraction away in a different room, or with someone else, so I won’t be tempted to grab it
- Planning out everything I want to get done beforehand and crossing off my list as I go
- Being in a quiet space where I am comfortable and relaxed
- Having candles lit and a nice warm cup of herbal tea
- Putting on some music to set the mood
We are constantly surrounded by pointless distractions, which can make us forget what it feels like to be true to ourselves.
Put down your phone. Turn off the tv. Unplug the wifi.
Be different. Be creative. Be free.