A dissertation coaching client said that she stopped watching TV and picked up her writing pace in order to meet a deadline. Now that she has met the deadline, she worries that she will be sucked into watching all of the TV shows that she recorded during her heavy-duty period of writing.
Do you record TV shows? It’s just too easy, isn’t it? I doubt that I’ll ever catch up on all of the International House Hunter shows that I seem to record every day. Occasionally I wonder how on earth all of the shows pile up, foolishly forgetting that I clicked on “record series.” And there must be at least 3 International House Hunter shows a day!
My client also worries that not only will she binge on watching all of the TV recordings waiting for her, but from experience she knows of the torpor that will hit her once she starts watching the hours of TV. It will be hard to get back into her writing routine. Digital stress strikes again!
Recently I stayed in a small town at an absent relative’s house (no I wasn’t a home invader–it was by invitation!). This was a house with no TV and no internet access. I was looking forward to seeing how the absence of TV and lack of email would affect me.
It was a little eerie, but good. Many clients say that it’s hard for them to get into flow while writing and sometimes they find it hard to jump into a long book that is required reading for their topic. Experience tells me that if you remove yourself from the easy temptation of TV and the internet, flow will be much easier to accomplish than you might imagine.
With no TV and internet, I moved quickly into a reading and writing routine. I gave no energy to avoiding writing and no energy to avoiding TV. And I wasn’t recording TV shows for later. It was a win-win-win.
Often, clients who have a day job say that one change they are making in their lives as dissertation writers is to leave their blackberries at work. I feel the same way about checking office email at home. Too often employers expect the unreasonable–that is, that you are online, plugged in, no matter what time of day, no matter where you are.
If you can leave the blackberry and the office email at the office, cut way back on what you are recording on TV, and limit when you will check home email to an absolute minimum, you may be surprised how easily you, too, can move into flow.
And you can control digital stress.
Do you have some strategies on how to avoid digital stress and the temptations of TV and email? I would love to hear from you.
All good wishes,
Nancy Whichard, Ph.D., PCC