I have been quoted as saying that my computer is both my best friend and my worst enemy. Now I feel that way about Wi-Fi on a plane.
Not that I fly every week, but I do fly plenty. And as a busy business owner, work seems to take over much of my life – often eclipsing sleep time.
Getting on a long flight typically used to give me the opportunity to catch some much needed shut-eye. There's something about the gentle movement and sound of the jets that work better than a sleeping pill. An extended reclining seat nap would leave me refreshed while making the trip “fly” by.
When planes first began to offer Wi-Fi, it was kind of exciting – and it was free. How cool was it to answer e-mails and play Word with Friends at 30,000 feet? But then it all changed.
Wi-Fi was available on more flights. It was like a lottery – would my plane have it or not? When I saw that my plane had Wi-Fi on board, it meant that I could get a lot of work done. Getting a jump on my “to do” list was certainly a benefit.
Until it wasn't.
Now, if I see Wi-Fi on my flight, I feel obligated to work. Since I pay for it, I feel even more obligated not to waste it. When I take advantage of the Wi-Fi on board, I get to accomplish heaps of work, but I don't get to rest. It's actually quite simple: If there's Wi-Fi, I must work. If there isn't, I get to sleep. I am at the mercy of the Wi-Fi gods.
I suppose I should take charge of my own decisions.
What do you think? Do you take advantage of Wi-Fi when you fly? How do you insure the proper work-life balance?
Sheryl Rowling is chief executive of Total Rebalance Expert and principal at Rowling & Associates. She considers herself a non-techie user of technology.