Fiona Blayney: calling time on unnecessary tech

Using technology for technology's sake can be a frustrating experience. You can end up with a tech stack of the latest and greatest only to find it doesn't actually solve the problem you wanted it to. Here, Fiona Blayney details her love-hate relationship with technology and how she came to realise she didn't need to follow the latest trend, just her latest plan.

I wear an analogue watch.

You know, the old school variety with a face and hands.

I love my watch. I love the weight of it on my arm, how it doubles as a piece of jewellery and how when I bought it many moons ago, I felt just a little bit fancy. 

Unfortunately, though, our love story is peppered with potholes. Potholes caused by my other love, technology. 

My Classique watch has been patient with me, particularly as I often set him aside and develop strong feelings for a new tech gadget.

Over time, the latest Fitbit came and went, and then there was the period where I became enamoured with my Garmin. I’ll be so bold as to say there was a time when I was watch-free, turning to my iPhone to keep me on track.

Each time, my Classique patiently waited in my drawer, hoping we’d reunite for more than just special occasions.  

Classique and I had been going well. However, I’ll be vulnerable and let you know we are again on rocky ground.

It’s not Classique’s fault. It looks good on my wrist and maintains the correct time.

Unfortunately, it’s me, it’s always me. Greener pastures are calling my name.

The greener grass that is technology.

While I have resisted for so long, I finally have a genuine problem that Classique can not solve.

In doing so, I’m thinking about calling a timeout with Classique and starting a new relationship with an Apple Watch. 

I’m actually pretty proud that I’ve stayed the course with Classique.

You see, the Apple Watch has been teasing me now for six years.

Are you surprised I don’t have one?

Perhaps understanding how my relationship with technology has morphed over the years will help you understand why.  

It’s mid-2010, and the iPad has only recently launched (April 3, to be exact).

I’ve formulated a plan to purchase this sexy new addition for my technology stack. A friend in the US bought one for me, as you couldn’t get them here yet, and shipped it over.

When it arrived, I had the latest gear and more than no idea.

I had an iPad in Australia with a US operating system, which rendered it useless.

So for US$1000 and with my street cred shredded, I was back where I started. 

I’d like to say this iPad story was a one-off, but it is not.

There are several additions to that collection of technology bought, not used, not valuable, not really wanted. 

Be it hardware or software, I’ve added tech to my life for fun, to solve the wrong problem, to be at the front of the pack or to follow a trend with limited research, a whole lot of hope and poor implementation.  

A few years ago, I decided to change the narrative. No more absent-minded technology.

Perhaps this would be a valuable narrative for you too.

Mindful technology purchase and use ensure that technology ownership and how it is used, is a choice.

It’s a wanted relationship, it adds value to life and business, and it solves the right problem without creating bigger ones along the way. 

Today, instead of following the trend, I make and follow a plan.

I identify the problem I want to solve and then find the technology to solve it.

I use technology on my terms. I can switch it on and off, professionally and personally. Maybe you’d be better off if you did the same? 

The Apple Watch? I just want a heart rate monitor, but the combo of phone, time, and Apple Pay, is appealing.

Working out how to de-active the features that aren’t aligned with my requirements, and will be a distraction, has sparked a few more ticks in the yes column.

Maybe Classique and I can go out on special occasions?  

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Fiona Blayney

Fiona Blayney is the founder and director of Real+, an industry first Property Management learning platform. For more info visit