Unplug and Carve Out Some Free Time

We’re all just so busy.  Working, studying, raising kids, planning for the future.  Sometimes, for those of us tethered to all these activities by the computer, it can seem like we just don’t get enough time to unplug – literally or figuratively.  Here are a few tips on how to reclaim the spare time you may recall having once had to spend on yourself.  These come courtesy of Kari Henley and you can read her whole article about Reclaiming Spare Time here.  Kari says: Email Self-Control — Declutter your inbox by unsubscribing to anything you don’t need or read regularly, and try not to continue long email conversations that aren’t necessary. One of Therese Borchard’s tricks is to take weekend breaks from her computer. Imagine! This is a great way to scrounge up a ton of free time — think of it as email Sabbath, (Reading this column, however, is an acceptable exception). Social Networking is junk food, plain and simple. Let’s face it — Facebook is the Doritos of friendships and Twitter is a super size box of Fries. Both are tempting, and both are ultimately not all that healthy. Take the time for some “slow food” — home-cooked friendships that require face-to-face time. If you are IM’ing someone in your office, get up and try walking over for a change. Facebooking your best friend? Pick up the phone or stop by; imagine how you look from space, hunched over terminals sharing the daily chatter. Find the “in-between” moments of the day to embrace as spare time. Driving is a great opportunity to do some deep breathing, turn off the noise in your head, and notice the scenery around you, rather than listening to talk radio, eating, or talking on the cell phone. Find the moments in the shower, doing dishes or walking the dog to flatten out as buffer zones of nothingness. Force yourself to be bored. Remember being bored? It is the MacDaddy of spare time. Kids today think five or six seconds of spare time equals being bored, and many adults’ tolerance for unfilled moments is not much better. Set aside several hours once a month with nothing particular to do and see how it affects you.

6 Responses to “Unplug and Carve Out Some Free Time”

  1. The computer, cell phone, and technology in general have taken over everyone both young and old. I personally have two children, how would my mother of eight have made time for technology? I can remember her big treat at the end of the night was the game Tetris that was hooked up the old fashion way to the television. Most children of all ages have cell phones and spend many hours a day texting.

    After reading this blog, I sat back and reflected upon my own habits. I am a daily Facebook user and after looking at it as the Doritos of friendship, I am going to take a second look at this time stealer. I think I will give one of my facebook friends a call. I can’t say I get a lot of junk e-mails, mainly store coupons which save my family money. As a new graduate from the Allen School, I will definitely welcome boredom. I will also, especially on the weekend, try to stay away from the computer and make an effort to be bored once in a while.

    To all the current students, don’t do as I do, log into facebook and minimize the screen!

  2. Debbie Wojcik

    Professional associations/certifications:
    Being a part of the American Academy of Professional Coders is important to your career as a medical biller and coder. Our State Coding Conference here in Virginia is in October in Virginia Beach. As a member of the organization, you will the opportunity to network with other coders and possible employers. Also, available is the opportunity to learn new information on various topics in our healthcare field and pick-up some CEUs, which are required to maintain our certification here in VA as a certified Medical Biller and Coder. So check out your state Coding Conference, it’s the place to be.

  3. As a new graduate of Allen School’s Online program for Medical Insurance Billing and Coding, I would like to reflect on my experience. From my first contact with the members of the enrollment team, I have been thrilled with the positive and encouraging attitudes of everyone associated with the school. I could never have imagined how easy it was to apply to the school, apply for assistance to attend the school, and then begin a very fast-tracked program towards a rewarding career with stupendous potential. The course instructors were magnanimous and extremely loyal to the school’s mission as well as to the education process. Students were expected to perform as if already hired for a job, to exhibit the characteristics of an exemplary employee, and to embrace the knowledge of this chosen profession. Even with a strong medical background, I was overwhelmed on several occasions and my course instructors were always there to lend a helping hand and offer words of encouragement. Many thanks to the staff of the Allen School Online and many blessings to all those who worked so hard for me!

  4. I can relate to this i think that everbody needs time off for them self,like me.i have a seven year old daugther that i take care of who goes to school as well as i do and helping her with her homework and getting her ready for school and doing my homework and getting my self ready for the next day for the week it’s a full time job.

  5. Gwen Boyd

    This has been fun. But don’t think I could do it again. It has taken me away from my family a lot. They have missed me and you can tell it. I had to do in order to make a better living for my family. I had lots of nice teachers and hard work to do. Now, that I will graduate from here I just want to say Thank you to all that helped me. Have a great life and not to stressful I hope.

    Thanks again,
    Gwen Boyd

  6. I found the part about the social networking is junk food, plain and simple so very true, especially kids growing up now communicate too much through emails and websites, even making alot of their friends through websites and they are not learning the proper social skills, not to mention exercise and fresh air. I think the internet is a great tool but we need to limit it and get back to some real socializing

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