Fun Ways to Fight an Internet Addiction
by Rebecca Kerr
Maybe it hasn’t happened yet, but it will. One night you’ll suck down the last grainy drops from your coffee cup and realize it’s 3 a.m., and you’ve been scrolling through Japanese cat photos for six hours straight. You’ll have to face the un-photoshopped truth: You have an internet addiction.
Don’t wait! You can still wrench your life from the jaws of Pinterest by following these simple suggestions.
1. Adopt a Real, Live Cat
If every internet addict gave a warm, forever home to a feline in need, it would solve both the pet overpopulation problem and the compulsion to stalk other cats on Youtube. Have you ever tried to search videos with a ten-pound siamese sleeping on your wrists? It takes a level of determination that you probably don’t possess. If you relapse, add another cat, but always be sure to spay or neuter. Soon you will be too buried in the expense of kitty litter and toys to afford a broadband connection.
Turns out there are places on earth (in America, even!) where human beings are still forced to use dial-up. Yes, you read that right. DIAL-UP. Pack up the kids, buy some books on homesteading, chicken farming, and solar energy, and go really, really green. All those clever gardening ideas you saw on Pinterest will be proven disasters, or you’ll be so successful you’ll never want to return to urban society again. Problem solved.
3. Get Together
You probably have Facebook friends who are just as susceptible to Tumblr poetry as you are. Make a pact to come together in real time, in a real place, during your peak scrolling hours– in other words, between dinner and sleep. Do all the things you would usually do on the internet, but do it old school. Write your status updates on white boards. Shout “Like!” aloud! Spew unedited poetry for all the room to ignore. Soon you will wonder what was so wonderful about it all, and the spell will be broken. Repeat as needed.
4. Work Outdoors
Take up a second job or a hobby that requires you to be outdoors for long hours, preferably far from a 4G connection. Mountain biking, rock climbing, sheep herding, brick laying, pool cleaning… doesn’t have to be fancy. Does have to keep your tablet-tapping thumbs busy, and maybe too dirty to touch your iPad.
5. Make Your Own Internetainment
All those Ted Talks, Vimeo channels, and award-winning blogs had to come from someone. And let’s face it… it wasn’t the person who sat around clicking through Buzzfeed slideshows in their underwear for six hours straight. Use your talents and interests and education to create content for other internet-addicted saps to obsess over. Sucks for them, but it feels good to be you. Who knows? Maybe you’ll spur them on to freedom.
- Look into their eyes.