Over the past few weeks, though, I’ve been slowly working on this. It has resulted in less time spent online (which is not a bad thing) and has been a good exercise in adjusting my own bechira point. At age 36, I have found myself, again, changing aspects of my behavior, I’m proud to write (it should be chizuk to anyone who needs it to change even the most mudane aspect of their personality).
For me things like going online (and other actions that are potenial unproductive and suck away my time from right under my nose) are really ‘pareve’ issues that I often fool myself into thinking don’t matter much and don’t require that much bechira to begin with. This is not the right way to think. I admit that I need to work on this.
The method I’ve been using was based on something I read a few years ago in Alan Morinis’ book Climbing Jacob’s Ladder. The book tells the true story of a man who grew up non-observant and his journey towards self-discovery that takes him to Rabbi Yechiel Yitzchok Perr, Rosh Yehsiva of Yeshiva of Far Rockaway, the tradition of mussar, and towards a Torah observant life.
Tuesday: 9.:25, 10:04, 3:28
Wednesday: 11:36, 2:31
Thursday: 10:18 (no rubberband, 3:47 (no rubberband)
Friday: 11:45 (no rubber band)
On Tuesday and Wednesday last week I put on the rubber band. As you can see, by Thursday, I felt that I didn’t need it. It just sat in my pocket. It’s a great feeling knowing that I can change.
Great Post Neil. It’s great inspiration to see someone in the process of changing habits.
Oh boy. Is it bad that I leave mine open, and check whatever mail that comes in within minutes?
I always check mine. My wife jokes, if the volume if the computer is on too loud and we happen to hear the “ding” of new email coming in, that I have to run and see if it is something important….
I check my (private)email several times a day as well.
It’s a very annoying habit.
I don’t see the psychology of the rubberband so clearly though.
Is it the time you take it out of the pocket and put it on that helps? Like counting to ten before exploding?
Neil: Have you found a positive action to replace the “negative” action of checking your e-mail so often?
You don’t show checking e-mail on Sunday or on Monday when you had no work, how often do you check e-mail when at home, and do you feel there is a difference between checking at home and checking at work. If so why?
I was, at the time, concerned with checking email while at work.
There really is no difference for me between check email at home or at work. I’ll write more in the next post.
heh sometimes days go by before I check my email…..It drives others (co workers and etc) nuts
I thought I was bad, but then I’d see people on the elevator obsessively checking their blackberrys and cell phones. I mean come on – it’s 2 minutes