I'm lucky that at work, I can use the internet quite freely, as long as I have an output that is high enough. I know others are not so lucky. Since I started doing W/Us, I've been spending more and more time on e2. As you all know, this site is great, and writing for it is actually productive - it's in no way like a pointless message board. It presents an opportunity to learn, teach and improve your writing skills.

But for us who have jobs and use e2 at work, there needs to be a balance, and that balance needs to be heavily skewed towards work, mainly to avoid being fired.

So how best to control the urge to node, read and play in the catbox when you should be working?

  • First, and most drastic of all measures: don't go to e2. Somehow, you could go cold turkey, leave this place and don't return. If you simply can't stop a heavy addiction you may have to do this. It's obviously extreme, and so to be avoided. Face it - this place is a terrible thing to walk away from. (I have done this on other sites, specifically Guardian Talk, the Guardian newspaper's talkboards). This could be a useful temporary measure, though.
  • Ideally, you should only access the site from home. I don't own a PC, so I have to use the work one. Using a work PC is a bit risky, as the temptation is there to get on the internet and head straight for e2. This is the source of the problem.
  • Don't put e2 on a list of quickly accessible bookmarks, and turn off the "auto complete" in IE's options, so that you have to manually type the URL every time you visit the site. this should give you enough time to stop and re-consider.
  • Come in early, and/or leave late, so you only node outside of the hours 9 to 5.
  • Noding during a lunchbreak is fine, as long as you keep to the hour /half hour you take off for this time. I know that I certainly cannot stop from straying outside the boundaries.
  • Write any ideas down on paper for nodes etc. - this way you can then forget about them until a more appropriate time.
  • An idea, related to the above, could be to node only one node a week. This might have the benefit of producing some really good stuff.
  • I'm unsure as to whether using a text editor for all noding is a good idea - it avoids you having a huge internet history, but it also means that the temptation is a little too close to hand.
  • The catbox is fun, but it's possibly the worst thing to become involved in too heavily. It needs to be refreshed frequently, and also can be really moreish. I, personally would avoid it at work.

Rather tellingly, I'm writing this at work, and not in my lunchbreak. I wish I could take my own advice...