How to Have a Healthy Relationship with the Internet


There’s lots of writing out there on how the internet helps us, hurts us, makes us better, makes us smarter, makes us lonely, makes us less lonely, et cetera. But there’s not often a lot of writing that gives advice on how to live in a digital world while protecting against the “dangers” associated with digital communication. We all see our friends deactivate their Twitter or Facebook for Lent and we see the articles about the expensive digital detox retreats but then we also see those friends come back to social media with a vengeance.

If you’re like me and need some inspiration to moderate your internet addiction without going cold turkey, here’s some advice from Michael Sacasas that I found helpful: 11 Things I’m Trying To Do In Order To Achieve a Sane, Healthy, and Marginally Productive Relationship With the Internet.

I’ll give you the first six, then you can get the rest at his blog, The Frailest Thing:

1. Don’t wake up with the Internet.

(I fail at this everyday.)

2. Don’t remain ambiently connected to your email account.

(This too.)

3. Sit on a link for a few hours or even a day before sharing.

(I’ve been sitting on this link a while, so I’m good here.)

4. Don’t take meals with the Internet.

(I only do this…sometimes.)

5. Breathe. Seriously.

(Just did.)

6. Do one thing – one whole, complete thing – at a time whenever it’s reasonable to do so.

(Wish I could do this more.)

Enjoy the rest of Sacasas 11 tips or read the thoughtful posts he’s done for us on memory and tech criticism.

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About the Contributor

Benjamin Robertson

Benjamin Robertson
Benjamin Robertson is a founding editor at Second Nature. He has worked in advertising for the Chicago Tribune and Gannett, and now is a web developer at Mediacurrent. He studied Communications and Media Studies under Dr. Read Schuchardt at Wheaton College in Illinois. He has presented papers on Marshall McLuhan, media ecology, and Christianity at the Media Ecology Association, National Communication Association, and the McLuhan's Philosophy of Media Centennial Conference in Brussels. He lives with his wife, Ruth, in Greenville, SC. His personal website is

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