Thanks to the internet and the wild things our mobile devices can now do, we can connect with people anywhere, heck, even on the toilet, what used to be a sanctuary of quiet contemplation.
We love the distractions and the small kicks we’re getting when something new happens, when someone likes our photo, when someone favorites a tweet or mentions us on Twitter.
We’re prone to these distractions, to being busy, to just waiting for another email to come in. I am myself. It’s been incredibly hard getting out of the habit of having my life evolve around the computer all day long. In particular, because our entire business is not only running thanks to and on the internet, it’s also because we’re a distributed team.
Because we’re split out across time zones, you’ll find someone in our chat room most of the time. If it’s not one from our team, there’s probably a customer I can help.
It’s tempting to leave the chat open while you’re busy with other things. It’s tempting to take a peek regularly to make sure you’re not missing out on anything. It’s tempting to take the laptop with you to the playground to check your email and do some work while your kid is playing (yes, I’ve done that too).
But what does it give you really beyond the simple satisfaction of yet another distraction?
You can’t put an instant price, value or reward on just watching your child play. It doesn’t reward us in the same way as someone liking our post on Facebook.
Yet it’s all we strive for, the distractions, getting more work done, staying up late to fix just one more bug.
Is that what we want to look back at when as we’re getting older? Are we going to measure us based on the number of retweets we’ve received in our lifetime?
Or is there something more to life that we’ve somehow forgotten, something that’s as simple as stepping away from your computer and devices and just enjoying life?