Last month I began my annual break from technology. Using previous technology breaks as my guide, I had expected to spend a lot less time at the computer and cell phone. My plan was simple, straight forward, and summarized in a simple slogan, Blog Less, Relax more. A month later, I write this blog post with the realization that my Technology Break of 2009 was a complete utter failure.
It's not that I didn't try to take a break from technology. In fact, my family even spent a week long trip camping in northern Minnesota. However, even there I couldn't let that week go by without checking the weather conditions on the Internet or sending a few tweets to my Twitter account. As I tried to reduce my pace of blog postings, I found myself consuming my "free time" by staying tuned to Twitter. In my defense, I felt somewhat obligated to be on Twitter since at the start of my tech break I was being considered one of the top CMS gurus on Twitter. How could I remain silent about content management after landing on such a list? It would have been miserably impossible if I tried.
I'd like to say that at least I kept my blog postings to a minimum during the break. Perhaps I did. But the fact that I posted at least 20 articles during the past month is hardly what I call proof that I spent my time away from the computer. Even without the PC, I found myself on the Nintendo Wii too much. How could I resist not playing Mario Cart when my wife and child were having so much fun playing the game? Real geeks don't step away from such challenges.
So for the first time in four years, I failed at taking a break from technology during the summer months. Perhaps in this era of social media and smart phones it is now impossible to take such breaks from technology. Indeed, for the very first time in my life, I find myself becoming less relaxed when I am not connected to a social network. It looks to be all true that technology is indeed changing how we think, feel, and relax.
Yet, I still have hopes that I can have a successful break from technology next year. I know living without technology can be done as I have lived that life many times. The real question before me is, do I still really want those breaks from technology? Slowly, I'm realizing the answer may be a resounding "No".