So I took off for the month of June and headed to the beach.
And I get that you kinda hate me right now, but you’ll feel better when you find out that I spent most of my time cleaning up the house. Not a little dusting here, a little mopping there clean-up. This was heavy-duty, sweaty clean-up work, and I suspect that some of these bruises are so deep, they’re permanent. Not to mention being ate up by mosquitoes.
And now you feel better, right?
So anyway, I’m back now, and I learned a little something something, being away for so long. Like…
Because I didn’t have wi-fi at the house, and I pay as I play for data, I skipped checking on Facebook and such. I don’t get a paper delivered to that house and so instead of starting the day with the news, I started the day with random reading…a novel, a book of verse, ghost stories. Sometimes, I’d watch the world news or local news, and oddly enough, I was attempting to fix a couple of channels on the cable on the same day as the gunman opening fire at the baseball practice, so I followed that news. But mostly, I just checked my email once a day, to keep up with any necessary business.
So I learned I have very little necessary business. What in the world have I been piddling around with every morning?
I learned that starting the day reading a novel or a book of verse put me in a better state of mind. Yes, I missed my AJC the first week. But by the next week, not so much. And now that I’m home, I’m beginning to wonder if I really need to read the paper every morning. I mean, after the headlines, it’s Dear Abby, the comics, and my horoscope. And if I’m being completely honest, Dear Abby ain’t what she used to be.
And I learned that life without social media is not only doable but relaxing. I love my friends, and I love knowing what’s going on in their lives, but I’m apparently incapable of balancing what I need to know versus scrolling through miscellaneous stuff. Once I checked into Facebook, I spent way too much time reading…what? I couldn’t tell you. But I can tell you that suddenly, I lost all that time I found at the beach. Time I spent working on a new manuscript. (Okay, calm down. I didn’t lie. I sweated ALL morning through the grunt work and then spent afternoons writing.)
So maybe I’ll give myself just one day a week to check social media. Maybe I’ll consider cancelling my newspaper subscription. And I’ve already stopped piddling around in my morning email routine.
Frankly, y’all, I need all the time I can wrangle. On top of the new manuscript, Precious the Laptop is gasping out her last breaths, and if you read my Muffin post, Get Smart, you’ll know how I feel about learning new technology.
I’m gonna need another vacation real soon.
I know what you mean, Cathy. Social media is such an incredible time suck. It shocks me how quickly the day flies and how little I’ve accomplished.
Exactly, Pat! I kept wondering why I had all this time…took a while for me to realize what was missing. 🙂
Cathy–I have a couple of colleagues trying to convince me to get onto Facebook. And now this post of yours. What should I do? Stay off or get on?
Oh, that’s a tough one, Sioux. I really like Facebook for keeping up with friends, both personal and professional. But it takes a lot of self-control not to click on all the videos, as entertaining as they are. And sometimes, when there are heated issues going on, it can be a stressful thing, too, as friends vent and/or rant. So I’d say consider why you’re jumping into these social media waters, and be careful that you don’t end up drowning in a sea of videos and comments! 🙂
I find that when I do something creative and/or not get on social media and/or don’t check the news first thing in the morning, I usually feel better throughout the day, like I did the thing – writing, reading, exercising, etc – that makes me, me. I aim for this at least a few times a week. It’s helped me realize what’s truly important to me. 🙂
Yes, I felt more like me than I have in a long while, Madeline. I think I can stay away from the social media for the most part but the paper? I’m already hooked again! (But I’m skipping all the bad news!) 🙂
BEACH? A month?! Lucky you. I waste too much time on social media. It is counterproductive, but I can’t pass up those cute puppies and kitten videos, and of course, my great grandson’s pictures. So glad you’re back.
LIke you, I dumped social media for weeks. And I LOVED it! I’m back on now in a limited capacity. I’m limiting Facebook to about 15 minutes a day. Blogging takes longer—to write and to read & comment, but that’s okay. But the other stuff…time suck! Especially since we have so much to do to settle into our new place, I have to guard my writing time, and that means dropping other stuff. Besides, when it comes time to choose between FB and sunset on the beach, well . . . sunset on the beach wins out every time. 🙂
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