Some websites just become a part of your routine, a habit. You check for updates five, 20, 60 times a day. You hit refresh more times than you can keep track of. It seems a lot like an addiction. And sometimes you need to quit, for your own well being.
There are plenty of sites that have dropped off my radar over the years, but only one that I purposefully quit. In college, I spent a lot of time on a certain car forum. Like, stay-up-half-the-night-in-a-flamewar amounts of time. Every computer I used in a day, whether in my dorm, at the library, or in the research lab where I worked, had this site bookmarked.
After a particularly heated evening of trolling and counter-trolling, I bombed an important exam the next day. I gave my then-girlfriend my login info, asked her to change my password to something I’d never guess, and I didn’t look back.
Well, I kinda looked back. In fact, I definitely snuck a few peeks at the site in the first weeks after my ultimatum. Without being able to interact, though, the thrill was gone. It was about as enticing as looking in the window of your favourite bar. When you can’t be a part of what’s going on inside, you just end up feeling creepy.
Curiosity and a little nostalgia led me to search up some of those old forum posts recently. They were dumb. But more importantly, they were a monumental waste of time. Literally nothing I wrote in all those hours has impacted my life since then in any measurable way. Which makes me wish I’d spent that time outdoors.
So what sites have you had to cut out of your life? Do you feel better without that drug-monkey refresh button habit gnawing at you? Or do you sort of miss it?