I’ve just started leading a 6-week digital detox course that helps people take control of their behaviour online. One thing that amazes me is how little we know about where our time is going when we’re connected.
About 50 participants who signed up for the course were asked to make a guess: how much time, daily, did they spend online? They were then given a little test measuring their daily activities to see how much time they really spend online. Although this is not the most precise test since it solely relies on personal feedback from participants, its results are quite impressive.
It turns out, on average, a person who took the test spends about 8.7 hours or 520 minutes online daily, whereas they think they spend 6.6 hours, or about 400 minutes. Because people also tend to underestimate how much time they spend on each particular activity, it’s likely that the real time they're connected is even higher. Bear in mind that we are are not talking about internet addicts, but the most normal people who use technology on a daily basis.
So there are about two hours of difference between what we think we do and what we actually do. It’s two hours a day of your time on average that you have no control over. That’s about 30 days, or one month per year. Think about it: for one month per year you have no idea what you are doing! Isn’t it scary?
Do you often complain that you don’t have time to do something that’s interesting or important to you? This is where your time is going.
Again, this is not the most precise test, and you may want to install various apps across your devices to track exactly how much time you spend – RescueTime or Yast are good examples. But it's the concept that's so important. Just take a moment to contemplate:
What would you do if you had two extra hours a day?
What would you do if you had one extra month a year?
Would you perhaps go travelling somewhere? Or read as many books as you want? Or learn a new language?
Isn’t your dream worth taking control over your life?
Think about it as you are browsing through yet another blog post.
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Dr Anastasia Dedyukhina is a keynote speaker, author of Homo Distractus, professional coach and a pioneer of the Consciously Digital™ concept.