It is rarely quiet in my household. Even when the children are at school my phone pings and buzzes with alerts, the dryer sends out a loud BUZZZZZZ to alert me that its work is done, and often a delivery guy leans on the doorbell (a hybrid bell/buzzer I’m convinced was designed by someone on crystal meth) usually with a package for a neighbor. These interruptions wear me down, disrupt my flow and leave me continuously asking myself, “Now what was I just doing?”. Some days I get so jittery and unfocused it even feels like I’m suffering from the side-effects of electric shock therapy. Must every machine we humans create constantly clamor for our attention? These electronic demands can feel relentless, like a house full of toddlers all crying for something from you simultaneously, or a police interrogation with questions you can’t answer fast enough flying at you from all directions.
I’ve suffered from these onslaughts for years, knowing the source of what was wearing me down, but never giving them enough of my attention to just say STOP: ”I’ll get to you when I can, everything in due time, but hold your horses, buddy!”
And then one day…
- I turned off the vibrate/alert function to my phone.
- I disconnected the power to the doorbell.
- I de-programmed the buzzer function on the dryer.
And then, in the words of Bjork,
It’s. Oh. So quiet
It’s. Oh. So still
You’re all alone
And so peaceful until…
Peaceful? Alone? Well, that’s all relative with young children, but I was certainly more relaxed, I wasn’t constantly being jolted out of my work flow, or interrupted when spending time with my children, or distracted while cooking, tidying, or doing any of the other things I do all day.
I certainly don’t miss the constant notifications and more importantly, I’m not actually missing anything! The alerts and mails keep on arriving on my phone, I eventually remember the laundry should be done, and some of the other neighbors are taking their turns collecting packages for the block. Miraculously, I’m also beginning to focus more, be more effective in my work hours, and spend more quality time with my children. The emails get answered when I can sit down, the dryer is emptied when I manage to get upstairs, and the doorbell, well, some days it stays plugged in and some days I keep it disconnected.
Are you also longing for the need to stay focused, productive, alert and energized? Take it from me: it’s time to KILL YOUR BUZZ!