A part time internet addiction - advice needed!! !

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spacephrawg
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Age: 38
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09 Aug 2010, 3:46 am

Ok I got a paradox of a problem: as can probably be discerned from the time stamp on this post, I've got an internet addiction problem but it is sporadic. Its more of an internet bender problem. The thing is I am just really really good at finding out information and visual resources pertaining to my interests (I am a professional artist and a car nut.) I also have a tremendous amount of patience for sifting through heaps of images, like thousands in one go. The trick to that is being able to easily identify something that looks even vaguely like what you are looking for at a glance. I can do it with snippets of melodies re: song identification too, at least some of the time.

I use firefox as my preferred browser. I just like the format and I like how you can have the favorites bar open on the left all the time. It makes cataloging what I find and starting new searches based on old info extremely easy.

Also another thing about FF's format which is more relevant is this: the tabs. Sure other browsers have tabs so that isn't unique to FF but the thing is, in my neuropsych testing, they found that I have above average intelligence in many areas but when it comes to working memory, I'm well below average. This means I can't hold one part of a math problem in my head while I'm doing the other part, for instance. So having a zillion tabs open is the perfect study, work and play aid because the software remembers these multiple trains of thought for me and i can shift between them without any trouble. It is actually very theraputic because the rest of the time, I am overstimulated by things I have to juggle and just can't.

To compound the problem, my computer is a top of the line late model Mac Pro tower with four 2.9-something ghz processors and 8 gigs of RAM, and a terrabyte hard drive. As I write this, I have 40 tabs open and the computer isn't even breaking a sweat. I also have a virtual machine running Win7 running at the same time, and have a 3d rendering program open. Everything is hunky dory. The youtube videos aren't even choppy.

Since I started using this thing a month and a half ago, I have added massively to my library of reference images of all sorts of things, from cars to sculpture to animals. Actually every concievable kind of car, or vehicle for that matter, sculpture and a few other forms of art, not that many animals since I prefer synthetic designs (far as I'm concerned, nature is something to drive my RC truck through - its the only ethical way to own an SUV!), as well as a host of other categories of images and on it goes.

It is so satisfying to be able to manage this data and get inspired by it and do things with it and then get more. It is a sublime feeling, as it is the perfect aid for someone with poor working memory coupled with workable abilities in other areas: I'm extremely sharp with some things, especially pertaining to my profession, but I can't keep up because of the working memory. I'm not saying I'm great or flaunting my abilities, or narcissistic for that matter. I'm just telling you how it is over here.

So here's the problem: when I get into a session of data-finding and it's going well, I get sucked in and can't stop. It eats up time and energy and I forget to eat and sleep, though I'm able to do other things like use the bathroom of course. It destroys my fragile sleep pattern! It prevents me from getting most other things done too.

The added complication is that I need to find what I find. It is important that I do it.

It is a big Catch-22. I don't know how to get out of this. I'm not trying to say I'm great or that you all should feel inferior because my computer is better than yours! Quite frankly I hate extremes and yet find myself needing some of them. I find them exhausting. I'd rather have the computer than not; what I'm talking about is the internet information binging. It gets exhausting and sometimes I feel afterwords like what I need to do is stay away from it for a long time but the thing is, in this day and age, one has to stay on top of communications online to keep up with the world. It is unavoidable. People who shun computers or are technophobic, or just Luddites, are at a tremendous disadvantage professionally, and they're missing out on all of the enjoyable things too.

I don't know how to get out of this problem! I can't afford to cut back, taking breaks screws with my mind because of the whole difficulty with shifting attention thing, and at the same time, internet and computer usage is limiting my productivity in most other areas of my life! What do I do?! ! HALP!



leejosepho
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09 Aug 2010, 10:39 am

spacephrawg wrote:
I don't know how to get out of this problem! I can't afford to cut back, taking breaks screws with my mind because of the whole difficulty with shifting attention thing, and at the same time, internet and computer usage is limiting my productivity in most other areas of my life! What do I do?! ! HALP!


I sometimes deal with that in about the same kind of way I try to get control of and end a song looping in my mind: I fight my way onto the director's podium, then use whatever means might finally gain control of the orchestra.


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