Alrighty… so how did the Facebook Fast go? It was not as difficult as I thought it would be. Maybe twice a day when I would get online I would have two seconds of disappointment at not being able to log in. No biggie. I think it’s given us some good positive changes as well. We have kept Facebook blocked on our computers, so we can only get on if we have the password. Which means when Jake is at school and I am at home, neither of us can waste time on Facebook! It has worked well. I will tell you a bit more about how we do that in a bit.
The second thing that this exercise made me see was that it isn’t just Facebook that wastes my time and distracts me from my duties. It’s the internet and really, my computer in general. It is a useful tool, but can very easily turn around and enslave you quietly to its distracting and destructive ways. But, we need computers in our home, for many reasons. So we can’t get rid of them. Instead we need to learn how to ease the temptation to keep them open all day long. I want to share with you what we have done in our family, as it has been a great blessing to us in the past and I think will prove to be again as we re-institute our boundaries this week.
First of all, we got an internet security system. I highly recommend this for every family – especially if the internet can be a distraction for you. Internet security is not just good for protecting you from dangerous or ungodly websites. It is good for that, but there are other benefits as well. We use K-9 Web Protection. This is the best, free internet protection resource available. We use a dual password, Jake knows the first half; I know the second. So we both need to put in the password in order to change settings or unblock access. There are two main ways to use it.
First, you can block websites. Other than the obvious, we block things like Facebook – the time wasters. Not that we can never go to these places, but we restrict them to check ourselves, especially during the day when there is work to be done.
Second, you can block time. We set ours up to block certain times each day. Most of the day is usually blocked – so we don’t get distracted… One thing I learned from our Facebook Fast is that I can get distracted by much more than just Facebook! If I only have a few times during the day that are open for internet use, I can’t sit on here all day reading blogs.
Another suggestion I have for other stay-at-home wives and mothers is this – do NOT keep your computer in your living area. As much as you can keep it anywhere beside the place you sit to relax and spend time as a family. If the computers stay elsewhere, you can focus on your family. If you can’t get lost on your computer while enjoying your comfy recliner and instead have to utilize it in the less desirable, squeaky office chair – you are much less likely to abuse it.
And resist the urge to keep it open regularly! If you aren’t using it, close it or turn it off and walk away. The more work it is to go back and check things the less you will do it and the more attention you will give to your other vocations.
These are the measures I will be taking myself in the coming week. I’ll let you know how they go. Blessings on your weekend! I know I will be enjoying these precious treasures…