The Long Way Home

The Internet is a comfort zone. It feels soothing to take dopamine hit after dopamine hit, but often I don’t become aware that I’m getting my next high until I’m minutes into another endless website scroll. By my standards, this is problematic Internet usage.

It’s a tricky thing to talk to other people about, because unless I’m exhibiting obvious out of control behavior, the response is one that denies any issue. It’s easy to identify extreme conduct as a concern; it’s harder to analyze how to handle a middling degree.

In an effort to use the poison to synthesize an antidote, I log onto the Internet to get a sense for how my problem stacks up against the data. What I learn reinforces what I’d suspected – things could be much worse. Japan has waterproof phones for shower use.

I still don’t want to accept that my new normal is permanent. Just because I’m not on the distant end of the bell curve doesn’t mean I’m content with my situation.

It dawns on me that what I’m searching for is a shortcut to escape. “My problem isn’t that bad, I can practically stop whenever I want.” Yet the enduring concern with cutting corners is that the chance for backsliding increases. I’m in need of a sturdier solution.

As soon as I’ve phrased my dilemma in terms of a desire for lasting change, the method I must employ becomes clear. It’s an angle I’m already familiar with because it’s reliably the answer to many of life’s obstacles.

Self-discipline is a concept that’s simple to recognize, but challenging to master. It represents a lengthy journey that requires an astonishing amount of mental fortitude to remain on the path. The good news though, is that this path doubles as the road to recovery.

If all goes well it’s still going to be an everyday battle to break out of my prison of lethargy, but I’m doing it in favor of discovering the anxiety, excitement, and growth that awaits me just outside of my sitting reach.

The Internet is a comfort zone. It’s a sphere where I’m allowed to never be wrong, and I can always flip on autopilot and drool. I’m laced with an intense desire to stick to predictable places.

I’m hoping this gets easier as it goes.

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