Tenner Week March 2017: Day 3

Tenner Week Feb 2017 Spring Clean Day 3 three Penny Golightly

It’s the third day of the current Tenner Week budgeting challenge. How are you doing so far? Have you done any Spring Cleaning yet?

Today, as well as sticking to our minimal budgets, we’re going to be doing a digital detox. The progression of technology, especially software and apps, has been incredible in recent years, but it can cause all kinds of problems along with its myriad of benefits.

Think about it. Bosses who fire off emails to staff late on Saturday evening, clients who get nervous if you don’t reply to their messages within 20 minutes (even if it’s lunchtime), relatives who post racist and other hateful material on Facebook and then get aggro when you defriend them, marketers who follow you on Instagram then drop you the second you follow them back, rolling news coverage and associated ill-conceived hot takes aplenty on Twitter, airbrushed photos and airbrushed lives all over the place, spam spam spam, unwanted ads in every feed, and a general feeling that you can never switch off.

Argh! No doubt you have a particular bugbear of your own, such as people fiddling with their phones when you’re out for dinner, or having bellowingly loud phone calls on otherwise quiet buses or train carriages…

Today, have a good think about how one or more of these might be detracting from your life more than it adds to it. Just whatever annoys, irritates or overwhelms you the most.

Next, take action on it in some way. It’s completely your choice, but if you’re stuck here are a few ideas:

  • Delete Facebook from your mobile if it distracts you too much (you can still use it on a laptop or desktop computer)
  • Answer your emails in batches once or twice a day, instead of rushing to open messages as they arrive (this won’t work for all professions but nice if you can get away with it)
  • Find out about how to get to ‘inbox zero’ or work out another way to prioritise your messages
  • Switch off loud alerts on your phone or computer for things that aren’t essential
  • Go through your apps and change the permissions so they aren’t all sending you regular notifications
  • Turn your phone off completely when you’re having dinner at home, or watching a good TV show or film
  • Have an evening free from all phones, tablets, computers etc, or ditch the digital stuff for an hour or two before bedtime
  • Mute or remove contacts on social networking sites if you find their updates aggressive, unpleasant or upsetting
  • …or whatever else floats your e-boat


What’s happening here

Yesterday went pretty well. I had a really delicious lunch of leftover black bean burrito filling with cheese on top, which was fairly healthy, and some fruit to snack on between meals.

I stayed out of the shops, and although I was tempted by some sales I’ve been researching, there wasn’t an urge to spend anything. More of a feeling of ‘oh, that’s nice’. Will definitely not be doing any window shopping or online  research tomorrow as I’m well aware of how resolve-weakening these things can be if you keep doing them.

For my digital detox I’m going to delete a well-known shopping app from my phone. It’s too much of a guilty distraction so it has to go. I removed my payment details from a couple of other apps recently too, and it’s been really good at preventing those impulse purchases. The final thing I’m going to do is to change the permissions on the Instagram app because I’m sick of the number of notifications it sends – so distracting and unnecessary.

Tonight I’m staying in and making bangers and swede-potato mash for dinner. There are some fresh greens and frozen peas to use up too, I think. I’m also threatening to make instant blender ‘ice cream’ with a bag of frozen raspberries, but not if I’m too stuffed after the main meal. Lovely stuff though, give me a shout if you want the recipe.

Total spent so far: £0.00

How’s your Tenner Week going? Do you need to do any kind of a digital detox today?


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