Photo Diary / The Upside of A Computer Crashed

Thursday, April 26, 2012

My computer crashed a few weeks ago and since then life just hasn't been the same. I have felt a bit cut off from the world, since sadly, it seems so much of my world is via my computer screen. I say it's because my work is online (and that is true) but mostly it's due to lack of ability to stay away and my super awesome ability to find more things to look at and look up. (Actually that last part is not true, sometimes I just stare at my screen blankly). But since I living mostly sans-computer, I can say one big difference is how sparkling my house is But I am almost certain that's totally coincidental! No, it's not.

There have been some real perks to not having my computer to distract me,  as I said my house is cleaner, which living in a fairly small space with three boys is a pretty big perk. We have done much more outside the house. Instead of being "bored" and heading over to my "station" to unwittingly spend 20 minutes on Facebook looking at vacation photos of a friend of a friend that I have never even met, or type in the lastest thought that went through my head like "how tall is mel gibson?", we would go outside or go for a walk, go get ice cream, or I would tackle that stack of papers that had been haunting me. Not that we/I didn't do these things before the laptop crash, but I am talking almost every time I had that "hmmm, I am bored - did the dishes, made dinner, swept...." I would turn to my 3 year old twins and say "wanna go..." or I would go clean neglected corners of my house. We found worms and gardened, planted bulbs and veggies. Heck, while my twins were sleeping, normally my extra special computer time, I even painted my living room and kitchen and cleaned out some closets that had been keeping me awake at night for the last year! My 14 year old son has even followed my lead (though I am sure he is totally unaware of this, nor would he admit it!) and has been hanging out with me more too! Was it really him just hanging out in his room being a teen or was I just not as available as I thought I was?? 

So my initial panic attack at not having my "lifeline" truly helped reorganize my perspective on incorporating a little more "be here now" in my daily life; and recognize maybe I hadn't been doing so as much as I thought. Of course the downside is I have been neglecting my blog here and am behind in many of the computery things necessary for my survival. But all in all it's been a refreshing lesson in not being so incredibly dependent on my computer for all my little bouts of boredom. Now I have my new fancy computer and I am glad; I am also pretty sure the next few days are shot with doing much more beyond playing with it and catching up. But I intend to not forget these magical weeks of being so much more present and spontaneous. I hope to "turn off my computer and go outside" with much more frequency than I "allowed" myself before, because let's be real I always hopped over to my computer for "work" purposes and found myself doing something completely unnecessary.

In the Garden

"happy" the worm - not sure that happy was actually happy though! he was handled for about 45 minutes.

 looking for flowers

I am going to consciously try to make a day a week mostly computer free and set aside times during the day where I don't go to my computer at all in order to keep up the momentum I have going. I also have my iphone and blah blah blah. We certainly are deep into a pattern of being constantly connected to an electronic device. I do find value in that, especially because I do all my work on line, it's great to know you can always be available for your business, but should you always be available? I didn't realize how tethered I was until my computer was no longer... I think I can make a few hour blocks throughout the day where play with my kids isn't interrupted with checking an order status or jumping at the ding or dong of a new email. Everyone can wait one measly hour while I hunt for worms with my kids uninterrupted

Do you have any computer-less times? Do you have any tricks for not allowing yourself to be completely ruled by your devices? 

{Top image via}


  1. It's good to have you back! And I am a firm believer that, no you should not always be available. I "try" to limit myself to significant computer time in the early morning and again after the day is done. "Try" being the operative word here. ;)

  2. Great Post, you have to be able to get away from the computer, limit yourself, give yourself a time, and then do other things.

  3. What a great lesson. Although I would be devistated if I lost all my pictures etc - so backing up your data is also a good idea!
    Glad you enjoyed being more present! It is so important.

    1. ok, well, let me clarify i didn't lose everything!! this would be a very different post had that happened! one filled with poor mes and life sucks! i knew my computer was headed for the grave so i actually had saved everything! miracle i was that responsible, a proud little moment in my life.

  4. I really enjoyed reading this as I have noticed that the more time I spend away from the computer, the happier everyone in my house seems to be. The downside- I love writing my blog, but as we know, it takes an awfully long time to promote and when you don't promote, not much progress occurs. Until life starts to slow down a bit, I've compromised to continue writing (because I enjoy it) and spend less time promoting it, until I can fit in the balance that works for everyone. Sounds like you are finding your balance as well. :) Great post!

    1. well said! i guess that's exactly what i found, everyone was happier! when my computer died i thought it was going to be horrible until i got a new. i thought my life would just fall apart. but what happened? everyone seemed happier! and i think i may have been the happiest.

  5. Sometimes blessings come in small burps in our daily lives. Great post! You've reminded me how important it is to take some time off and really enjoy both others and the great outdoors. I've been working on this, too, trying to only go on once a day most days. I've missed a day or two here and actually liked the break! Keep musing and writing, though. You help e work through similar things (I'm lazy about backing up, so am going to do so after this session -- thanks!).

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