How much run time is running your life?

We often hear the word “run-time” but what does this word really mean? Technically, it refers to the time that a computer is running a program. Personally, I think of it as the time I spend running my computer and the time I must spend to deal with it. I have too much “run time” in my life. My computer often feels like it is running my life: emails, spam messages, viruses, run-time errors and other problems caused by this high-tech piece of equipment. I often joke that when I retire I am going to drop my computer into the biggest lake I can find or use it as a boat anchor while fishing.

We invent labor saving devices to save labor and they end up taking over our lives and costing us our sanity. Computers, cell phones, PDA’s and Blackberries have become Frankenstein like monsters. We can’t live without them. Some people take them to bed or even in their showers. They become an extra appendage. We have portable batteries and portable rechargers so that we never run out of energy for these devices. While the devices may never run out of energy, we sure do. Human beings were not designed to be run 24-7. We need downtime as well as runtime and even more rest time or perhaps some relaxation time. Our ubiquitous productive tools beep, ring, chirp, hiss and vibrate at us in a never ending chorus to get us to be more productive. Several popular science fiction stories have foretold the day when robots that take over and enslave civilization. Perhaps that day has already arrived.

Are you controlled by your computer or other labor saving productivity tool? Can you turn it off for a day or leave it home? What would happen if you did? Who will get mad at you if you do not answer their email today? How far behind the curve would you be if you did not answer your cell phone today? What might it do for your stress level if you had less “run-time” in your life? What if you had a “down time” day once a week? Do you have a cell-phone ringtone for compassion and kindness?

Well, folks, I am going to Belize today and will not be back until the 5th of April. I am going to get ten days of “downtime.” I will be back on the 5th and resume my blog then. Hopefully, I will use this time to think of some creative blog ideas and to rejuvenate my life. John

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