Detachment Drill 1: Deliberate Denial of Service

You’ve probably heard of or been victimized by a DDS (distributed denial of service) attack.

Hackers use this strategy to disrupt or halt a website’s publication.

But for the purposes of this blog post metaphor:

You are the websiteYour attention is the server bankThe DDS hacker is consumer culture — especially digital consumer culture.

In a DDS attack, hackers essentially torpedo a website by rapidly and repeatedly pinging the site’s servers with repeated, relentless requests for information, sending so many queries in such a small amount of time that the website (as if it were a person) essentially throws up its hands and becomes paralyzed.

Meanwhile, all through your waking hours, you are being pinged hundreds if not thousands of times a day with requests for your attention.

If these requests don’t paralyze you, congratulations. This means you are also smart enough to know that these constant assaults will make you a compliant/complicit consumer/target unless you meet them with detachment and mindfulness.

Which brings me to the drill.

For a half hour, I want you to flip the script and inflict a Deliberate Denial of Service attack on your mobile device.

Later, you can employ this exercise for your TV, desktop, car radio … even on draining people in your life.

But for now, let’s stick with the mobile device.

Pick one  exercise on this list today and do it.  Tomorrow, pick two and do those two.  Finally, build up to three on the third day.  Then, leave me a comment here and let me know how it went.

  1. If you check your phone first thing in the morning, don’t check it for at least a half hour after you wake up.  An hour if possible. A great strategy here is to only look at your phone once you get to the office (if you go to an office).
  2. If you look at Facebook on your phone, today you are not going to use the facebook app.  Go hog wild on your other devices but watch yourself.
  3. If you look at Twitter on your phone, today you are not going to use the Twitter app. Feel free to watch yourself consume twitter on other devices.
  4. If there is another social network that you look at on your phone.  You are not going to fire up that app today!  Other devices are welcome, if you must.
  5. If you look at your phone in the bathroom, today you are not going to look at your phone in the bathroom.
  6. If you look at your phone in the car, today you are not going to look at your phone in the car.  Nor are you going to make outbound calls from your car.  If there’s an inbound call, you’re going to decline unless there’s an emergency that can’t wait.
  7. If you enjoy snapping pictures of your child or friends on your phone, today you are going back to the 19th century.  No pictures allowed.
  8. If you play games on your phone, today you are not going to play games.
  9. If you use your phone to check your hair or makeup, today you are going to have to go find a mirror.
  10. If you normally have your phone noises or vibration on, today you are going to have it be completely silent.
  11. If you dare, today, you are not going to text.  If you need to chat, you can use the phone. If someone texts you, then you can call them back to let them know what you are doing.
  12. If you check sports scores on your phone, today you will not check sports scores. At all.
  13. If you’re a regular shopper on your phone.  There will be no shopping today.
  14. If you check your phone the last thing before bed, you will instead place your phone on the charger at least 30 minutes before you go to sleep, and NOT LOOK AT IT AGAIN.
  15. If you leave your phone in the bedroom, tonight you will kick it out.
  16. If you leave your phone on all night, tonight you will turn it off or at least onto airplane mode.

You get the idea.  Or you can choose your own DDS exercise.  Please feel free to comment and suggest good ones.

Today, my DDS attack will be on the Twitter app. (#3 above)

I will let you know how it goes.

Digital detachment is my goal.

Become a Digital Detachment reader: | twitter

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