Attention Log

This week I assessed my attention level when using technology. Or lack thereof if we’re being honest….What I learned about myself was eye opening, yet not surprising. I’ve included my log at the end of this post.

I learned that I don’t have very much patience when it comes to technology. This became clear when I had a bunch of programs up, trying to solve a problem. I was jumping from one tactic to the next, without closing out of the previous window. This caused my computer to lock up and had to be restarted.

Going off the multiple things open theme, I noticed that rarely do I ever have a single internet tab opened at a time. While I write this post, YouTube is open in the next tab. I’m not actually using it to play music or watch a video….it’s just open. Sometimes it’s genuine neglect to close the last thing I was doing. Other times it’s something that is distracting me from my current task at hand….it’s about a 50/50 shot which it is.

I also have the same tendencies on my phone. If someone picks up my phone to search online, it’s generally followed by a cringe when they realize how many apps I leave open or browser tabs I have on.

I noticed, whenever I evaluated how I felt this week, I was usually agitated, stressed or anxious. Go figure….I’m constantly jumping from one task to the next when I use my computer or phone. This week taught me that I need to slow down a bit. One task at a time….MUCH easier said than done, however. I honestly have no clue where to start. How do you guys reign it in when you’re digitally a hot mess? I do know that simply being more aware of my feelings is helpful and a great start. Checking in emotionally helped me realize just how big of an effect my habits have on how I feel.

  • 4/27/17
    • Laptop, dining room table, no one else around, no noise in the background, save the washer and dryer
    • About 40 minutes by the time my goal was accomplished
    • My goal was to compose and publish a blog post for class, and document my attention.
    • I alternated between trying to write my blog post and thinking about what I was doing. There was a lot of pauses, which is common for me when I don’t know specifically what to write about.
    • I felt anxious because I didn’t have a clear intention for my post, which made me have to think hard about what I was doing.
    • I think having a quiet space did help me in writing my blog post. It is even harder to write when there are distractions around.
    • Having access to Facebook did not help. It was a distraction. I checked it twice in this period, which is honestly probably less than if I wasn’t having to write down my behaviors.
    • I felt like having to monitor my behaviors made it harder to focus on what I was doing. I got caught up thinking about thinking.
  • 4/27/17
    • Phone, riding on public transportation.
    • 15 minutes.
    • To pass the time, I pulled out my phone.
    • I ended up mindlessly scrolling through multiple apps and checking social media.
    • I felt like I was wasting time. I felt moderately anxious.
    • A lot of the time, I will bring a book with me when I ride on public transportation. I had forgotten one this time, which didn’t work well for me. That time works better for me when it is spent reading a book. I feel less anxious than when I scroll through my phone.
  • 4/28/17
    • Phone, casting a TV show to my TV.
    • Around 45 minutes, the length of a show.
    • I am normally home for lunch. During my lunch, I watch an episode of Netflix while I eat.
    • I ate lunch and watched the episode. I was done with lunch about halfway in, so I did start to do other thigs while I finished the episode, including my daily create and apply a vinyl decal I just got on my laptop.
    • I felt relaxed during this time. Since I do school online and some work from home, I try to carve out an hour to take a break in the middle of the day. Otherwise I will work until I burn myself out.
    • I don’t think anything worked/didn’t work. I don’t have expectations for my behavior during this time because it’s my break from the day. Anything goes.
  • 4/30/17
    • Laptop, sitting on the floor in my bedroom
    • 20 minutes
    • I was trying to print and cut some documents using my printer and plotter. I am new to using the plotter, so I have yet to master the skills needed. Still learning!
    • I attempted, but was not successful in printing and cutting the documents I was working on.
    • I was agitated because I ended up opening more and more tabs the more frustrated I got, which ultimately locked up my computer and I had to restart.
    • Nothing worked. I did not accomplish what I set out to do.
    • Opening multiple tabs didn’t work.
    • This exercise showed me just how little patience I have when it comes to technology.
  • 4/30/17
    • Laptop in the living room
    • 1 hour
    • Online shopping on my laptop
    • I was shopping for a new wallet
    • I was in a good mood because I like online shopping. I was also focused because I had specific parameters I wanted my new wallet to meet. I was jumping back and forth between different tabs to compare the different wallets. I left the experience satisfied, but annoyed that it took so long.
    • Having multiple tabs open to compare the items helped.
    • I felt like this took too long. I should not have spent so much time on it.

One thought on “Attention Log

  1. I think your post is very interesting because I also always have multiple tabs open on my laptop, but for different reasons. The reason why I always have multiple tabs open on my laptop is because they usually have to do with other assignments I am working on that haven’t been finished yet. I leave the tabs open as a reminder for myself to finish those assignments. I also differ from you because the majority of the time I was working on homework, I felt content and relaxed. I think this may be because I made sure I was extra comfortable while working on homework online. My tip to you is get comfy before you even pick up your laptop!


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