Checking to see if anyone has e-mailed you in the past five minutes. Watching a website to see if it has been updated. Reading your friend’s blog. And your friend’s friend’s blog. And then the random blogs that are linked from them. Then back to checking your e-mail to see if anyone has responded to an e-mail that you just sent them. Oh wait! Here comes an instant message! Start chatting with that person. Finally, you stop to go and settle down to do some work. But first, you want to just check one more thing. And then the cycle continues. Does any of this sound familiar?
If it does, then you probably have an internet obsession. It can be a symptom of depression, because you are finding ways to avoid having to do any work. A penchant for obsessions is a sign of depression, and internet addiction is another problem. More and more people are losing sleep and jobs to the internet as they find it harder and harder to get offline. So how do you do it?
The problem becomes even worse if you need your computer to do work. If you do, then you should keep your computer at home off, or at least offline. If you are not using a computer at work and find that you are having problems with your home computer, but cannot simply turn it off, there are a few things that you can do. The first is to set up a new user on your system who doesn’t have access to instant messaging, and can only use a few web sites. That will put a damper on your extraneous surfing. If you do not have an always-on connection (ie if you use dial-up) then the problem is a little easier. Just don’t connect. That will make it easier for you to keep yourself from the distractions that the internet provides.