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Gwen’s December Challenge: Internet free? Not a Possibility for Me!

Let me start by saying I completely failed my December challenge.

My challenge was to live 30 days without home Internet. It was a bold move, though with complete confidence, I cancelled my Internet with the intention of going cold turkey in December.

WHY?! You may ask? The catalyst to cancelling was watching this YouTube video:

I loved learning about minimalism from Joshua Fields Millburn of TheMinimalists.com. I was so inspired by the fact that he runs an online business and doesn’t have Internet access at home. As I was also in a bit of a funk at the beginning of December, I figured if I cancelled my Internet, it would force me to work out of coffee shops and cafes more often (and be with the energy of the people), instead of hermiting at home.

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My Internet-free plan worked for about 10 days. Then slowly, my addiction to being connected online started to creep back in. I found myself waking up in the morning and wanting to jump on Instagram right away. Or I’d check the news on my iPhone, and suddenly want to know everything that’s happening in the world. The trouble was, I had just 2 GBs on my phone’s data plan (which was running out quickly). And of course using my phone to check the Internet killed the whole spirit of the challenge!

Within a couple of weeks I had maxed out my phone’s data, and lost all desire to live out of coffee shops. As I needed the Internet for work, I decided to accept defeat (this time) and bring the Internet back.

Bringing It Back:

I suspect the feeling of getting the Internet back, was much how a caffeine addict feels upon their first taste of coffee after a dry-spell. WHOOOOOSH. Eyes dilated. Overstimulated.

Unlimited Facebook… and Instagram… and YouTube… oh my!

After two weeks of missing unlimited access to the content I was used to reading (from the productive health and wellness sites and business content) to the unproductive (aka a few celebrity gossip sites). It was officially time to mainline the Internet to see what I missed.

Turns out: I missed literally nothing.

I was able to catch up on the goss (LOL), and a few of my fave YouTube shows within an hour.

This was a very eye-opening experiment to me and a reminder that it can be challenging to change ingrained habits after watching one inspirational video. Now, I know it IS possible, though as it’s the new year, and perhaps you’re putting pressure on yourself to go ‘cold turkey’ with something (i.e. eating super healthy, cutting sugar, no alcohol etc.), I’d love to share a gentle reminder to go easy on yourself. If you don’t live up to your impossibly high standards, re-evaluate and start again.

Focus on building momentum, not perfection. That’s what I learned about cancelling the Internet. And it’s a challenge I may one day take on again.

My January challenge is to start preparing for taxes (yay! LOL). I have set up a meeting in February for all things taxes with my financial planner, Shannon Lee Simmons of The New School of Finance. This year, I’d love to be proactive with going over everything and crunching the numbers with time to spare. Every year is a new process, and this year I’ve put ‘Tax Prep Party’ on my calendar in a two hour block every Monday of January as a system to kick-start the process. I’ll report back at the end of the month about how my tax prep is going!

Sending you tons of positive vibes!

<3 Gwen

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