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I have a big problem using the Internet - I am using it for purposes unacceptable by my moral stands but fun.

Every time I login, after about 1 or 2 hours I lose the control to the unproductive task mentioned above. It has begun to be a big problem; I even find myself day dreaming and coming out with utterly foolish words and sentences.

I am sure this problem isn't uncommon - do you have any advice?

Please don't suggest seeing a doctor - I can't.

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Welcome to Personal Productivity! Can you please explain what you mean with "Net-Bite"? Do you mean you are addicted to the Internet? If so, what sort of sites in particular? –  THelper May 3 '13 at 7:42
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I have tried to help sort out your question. Please let me know if I misunderstood some of the terms you used. –  Rory Alsop May 3 '13 at 9:36
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@RoryAlsop thanks for editing..., actually I am in my twenties..., and a student yet... –  user2343237 May 3 '13 at 14:57
    
And thanks a ton to productivity.stackexchange.com sites and its assets-users to see to this problem... –  user2343237 May 3 '13 at 14:58

7 Answers 7

The first step is realizing that you feel like you have a problem. Whatever your happy time is, you find that it has taken up a significant portion of time that you would have otherwise wanted to use for other things. Don't become bored by what your doing, and literally stop yourself when you see that you are doing other things. A big portion of this is self-control and no one can really 'teach' that to you; you have to realize how to focus your energy when others are not around.

Whats important to you? Use the internet to connect with those things! If you enjoy drawing then browse around at drawings and try a few tutorials. I don't know, find other, more intriguing things to do. Check out Code Academy if you need a new hobby - you already have a computer and an internet connection! If you're unemployed then learning computer skills is a great way to get back onto the track of employment. No one can learn these things for you, and nothing is going to be given to you. Stay interested in what you are learning and realize that what you are doing now has a profound impact on what happens one day, one year and five years from now. Do what you want to do. Do what you are passionate about and you will realize which things are important or unimportant.

I'm not really sure what is referenced as net-bite or what internet bite means - it sounds like you have a lot going on in your brain. I always remedy my own scattered brain with a walk outside to get some fresh air, or changing my scenery. Open a book. Do something else when you feel scattered to regain yourself. Exercise works wonders - look up yoga videos and try to replicate the poses or go for a run or bike ride.

If you're into some soul-searching, check out Alan Watts Lectures on Youtube. Good luck!

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Hey Thanks for suggestions... and great line 'realize that what you are doing now has a profound impact on what happens one day, one year and five years from now.' –  user2343237 May 3 '13 at 5:20
    
thanks for Alan Watts Lectures link. –  user2343237 May 3 '13 at 15:06

Well I have two approaches to overcoming any addiction or habit I want to curb...

First, (Which only works if you have self discipline) the problem is your productive behaviors are getting compromised by your more enjoyable behaviors. Set yourself a rule (write it down) on how much distraction is allowed, if you violate that distraction you punish yourself (with something else productive that you want to do even less). We humans often become willing to do something we really don't want to when presented with something we want to do even less.

Second, (better if you're less self disciplined) remove the temptation. (But Rual, I NEED the internet for what I'm doing, how do I remove temptation I require?) Simple: there are these wonderfully evil tools to restrict where you can go to on the internet. The cheapest is to modify your hosts file (if you're tech savvy, I'm assuming you are) otherwise just grab a free proxy filter or parental control system. (yes, you're about to treat yourself like a child and take away your own toys.)

Whatever your online vice is goes into the blocked bin. Anytime you find yourself distracted with something that isn't productive during time you've allocated to be productive it goes on the list. When sit down to be productive, turn on the filter. Now in order to be bad you need to explicitly disable the filter. Make a VERY stern, non-negotiable, written down punishment for doing this. (Preferably something productive, like volunteering 4 hours to a local charity per incident, which is an excellent and socially beneficial thing.) Once you realize you broke your rule, make time to punish yourself. (Slightly masochistic, but it works.) Of course... if you follow through with your punishment and still misbehave you have to increase the punishment.

If all else fails you are left with the scorched earth approach... turn on your overzealous filter, have someone you trust take control of the filter so you can no longer disable it without them. (Making the filter on by default) you lose your right to these things you enjoy and have to earn them as a privilege. (It doesn't sound like your problem has reached this severity, but some addictions cannot be beaten alone, sometimes we need to have our addictions taken from us completely to free ourselves from them.)

Hope this helps, at least you realize you have a problem. Recognizing the problem is the first step in solving it.

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To be fair, strict punishments and light punishments have a similar effect. Except that when you're punishing yourself, you're more likely to not enforce a heavy punishment or be more creative in working around it ("I need Facebook for work..") –  Muz Jun 14 at 19:57
    
If you fall to the point you don't enforce your self punishments and continue to slip, it's time to enlist help. Make it harder and harder to do whatever it is that is distracting you. Some very drastic measures can be taken... I've had friends give away their gaming systems' hand their steam account over to someone else, cut their cable service, etc. Sometimes the only way to fight a problem is scorched earth... If you can't stop yourself from using facebook, delete your account. –  RualStorge Jun 16 at 14:10

A quick way to limit damage from getting sucked into unproductive things (general, I don't know what you are specifically referring to) on the internet (if it occurs in the evening) is to schedule an automatic shutdown at a specified time. When your computer shuts down, it provides an opportunity to snap out of what you're doing and try something else.

http://www.thespinningdonut.com/how-to-automatically-shutdown-your-windows-vista-computer/

You could also use a break software like Workrave to schedule a break every hour you use the computer. Again, use the break as an opportunity to snap out of what you're doing and find something else (ideally non-computer) to do.

http://www.workrave.org/

These things might help to snap you out when you're doing something unproductive, but at bottom you need to work on improving your willpower. I just read The Willpower Instinct: How Self-Control Works, Why It Matters, and What You Can Do To Get More of It by Kelly McGonigal, and I think it has a lot of good advice on the subject.

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Sounds like you need a tool to restrict your internet access. Check out StayFocusd extension for Chrome or LeechBlock extension for Firefox.

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thanks ll take a look, but inner peace is more important, as master shifu say to po 'If you are truly at peace, you can do anything' –  user2343237 May 3 '13 at 5:24
    
+1 I have found LeechBlock invaluable as it breaks you out of the trance you can get into while surfing and reminds or forces you to stop –  Matthew Lock May 21 '13 at 0:03

RescueTime is a brilliant tool for automatically tracking where your time goes while on the computer. Pair that with our own Beeminder and you can enforce limits on yourself. You can authorize Beeminder to read your RescueTime data so no data entry is needed. Beeminder will just let you know when you're at your limit and will actually charge you money if you exceed it!

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Same problem here. What you need is a simple software called SelfControl.

SelfControl is a great app on Mac, once you started it, there's nothing you can do to stop it, whether you deleted the app or restart the computer.

SelfControl is a free and open-source application for Mac OS X (10.5 or above) that lets you block your own access to distracting websites, your mail servers, or anything else on the Internet. Just set a period of time to block for, add sites to your blacklist, and click "Start." Until that timer expires, you will be unable to access those sites--even if you restart your computer or delete the application.

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Chances are it's happening because you don't enjoy what you're doing. You're not motivated. You're losing a lot of energy (the mental kind) by sitting in front of a computer.

Procrastination isn't solved by blocking it.. you'll just procrastinate in different ways. I'm not a fan of 'useful' procrastination either. It doesn't last and it still keeps you from doing important things.

Option 1: Get up. This is the core of the Pomodoro Technique - get off your butt every 25 minutes and you'll be far less lazy.

Option 2: List down things you've always wanted to accomplish. Dream big. Dream very specifically. What car do you want to drive 5 years from now? How much money do you want in the bank? What kinds of things do you want to accomplish for yourself, your family, your lifestyle?

Write 100 of these if you can, or just 10. Just seeing your dreams written down should motivate you enough to break through that laziness.

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