Week Two: What Do You Need?

Jennifer Kane
Jan 10 · 4 min read
Photo courtesy of @alesnesetril via unsplash

What technology do you need in your life?

You likely need to use technology for some aspects of your life right now. (Most of us do.)

  • Maybe there’s a certain platform or tool you’re required to use at your place of employment.
  • Maybe there’s a key application on your phone (or your phone itself) that plays an integral role in keeping your household organized and yourself, sane.
  • Maybe you’ve got tech actually implanted in your body, helping you stay alive.

Regardless of its purpose, this tech isn’t stuff you can (or will) simply toss out the window or walk away from, even if it drives you nuts sometimes.

This week we’re going to make a list of this tech we need and start differentiating it from the technology we simply want in our lives.

To be clear, just because something makes it onto your “need” list doesn’t mean it should get an all-access pass to your life and is necessarily healthy for you all the time.

For example, maybe you need to access Facebook each day for your job, but recognize you also get significantly distracted by non-work related matters while you’re there. Or perhaps you need to use an inter-office messaging system but find that constant pings about personal stuff from an annoying co-worker stops you from being as productive as you like.

We’ll explore in the coming weeks how to establish some boundaries to address these kind of issues.

What tech do you need to reach your goals?

Chances are some of the goals, projects, or tasks you identified in last week’s exercise may also be best/easiest achieved by using some sort of tech tool, application, or platform. (For example, perhaps you determined you’d like to be more mindful in your life and have identified an app to help with that.)

You should add this technology to your “needs” list in the exercise below too.

However, before you do so, make sure you’ve been picky in choosing this technology and are very clear about your intentions in adding it to your life. Also consider if there are “old school” tools, (like books, classes, coffee meetings with smart people you know, etc.) that can help you work on your goals and write those down too.

This Week’s Exercise

With all of this information in mind and, after reviewing the exercise from last week, take a blank sheet of paper (or blank screen on a document) and draw three columns on it.

Label these columns something like: “NEED/LIFE,” “NEED/GOALS,” and “WANT.”

  • Under the first column, list the technology you currently need for your life/work. Try to make this list as specific as possible. (For example, instead of writing “my laptop,” list, “Microsoft Office suite,” “home banking software,” or “Company Intranet” etc.)
  • Under the second column, list the technology you need in order to start working on the goals you set last week. Again, be as specific as possible.
  • Under the third column, list the technology you want in your life. (For most of us this will include stuff like Instagram, podcasts, Netflix, gaming, etc.) No need to get terribly specific here. This column is more of a dumping ground for information we’ll explore next week.

If you like, spend a few minutes playing around with these first two columns. Is there anything on this list that feels in any way problematic in your life right now? If so, circle or star those items so you can double back to them later in this course when we start talking about setting boundaries.

(Quick reminder: for the purposes of this course, the word “problematic” is entirely subjective — heck, so is the word “technology.” You define both terms however you like. For some, minor annoyances are problematic, while others don’t consider something problematic until it causes irrevocable harm in their lives. Both problems are equally valid to explore in this course.)

Now that you’ve got a better sense of what you want and need, next week we’ll look what’s preventing you from moving forward and start collecting some data to help you learn more about those obstacles.

Thank you for stopping by. I look forward to seeing you again next week!

Want to participate in this eCourse?

1. Continue to drop by my blog or Medium account each Saturday where you can read the weekly post at your leisure, or…

2. Subscribe to this email list and I’ll send you a post each Saturday.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this course as we go. Feel free to leave comments on any of the posts or email me at jen@jenkane.com if you’d like to share something privately.

Jennifer Kane

Written by

Author, advocate, educator, speaker, and chronic pain warrior. More info at jenkane.com

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