**i wrote this four years ago, but it’s a good reminder! Maybe I’ll get around to editing it sometime… :)**
So, we are a month into 2016. I’m sure you already read your fill of New Year Resolution posts – posts and articles about how we are going to lose weight, save money/pay off debt, and be better people.
This isn’t one of those posts. Instead, I want to share my journey on scaling back my online/facebook use.
I will admit I am online too much. Often, I am looking up recipes, activities for the kids, and news (yes, I am still a news junkie), but it was still too much time spent.While I often tried to keep my browsing time for during long nursing sessions with the baby, it usually lasted for longer than I wanted. Isn’t that how FB or the internet works? “Oh, i’ll check in for 5 min” but it somehow sucks you in for at least 30?
It is a new year and I want to live intentionally. With a purpose each morning. So, like reasonable person in the 21st century trying to break a habit, I went to google. “Why I should delete facebook” brought forward a myriad of ___. This article was probably the most convincing for me. Additionally, I just finished the book
A funny thing happened when I stopped mindlessly browning the web on Dec 31. I had a lot of time on my hands. Sure, it wasn’t in big chunks of time (ie, 3 min here, 5 min there). A few minutes after breakfast, or waiting for the toast to finish, or the time when the kids are actually playing together for long than 10 seconds (and not fighting!). Without the phone to zone out on, I became active again. Instead of checking my phone, I emptied the dishwasher, readied the coffee for the morning, chopped veggies, did laundry, and read two books! In 6 days! Yes, this is real life!
I found peace that I had been lacking in my heart for a long time. a peaceful tranquility settled upon the house and, more importantly, in my mind and heart. Without the constant “what is everyone up to” and “what is happening in the world” pressure, I felt at home in my life again. What mattered wasn’t whether Obama/Trump/Kim Kardasian (take your pick) said something absurd, or the latest TASTY food video.* What mattered was that my 3 yr old is learning to take really good photos on our point-and-click camera and my 1 yr old can now connect the Duplo blocks without my help.
* (let’s be honest. We’ll never actually make one of those, and it just makes you feel lousy for not trying more projects, right? yes.)
As a stay at home, there isn’t a lot of time for pursuing hobbies, especially when the children basically cannot do anything for themselves. It’s messy, tiring, monotonous. So, in the margins of the day when I do actually have some time (albiet in just a few minute chunks), i want to be creating, not consuming.
I had allowed myself to be sucked into the distractions, into the thinking that if I didn’t have a nice 1-3 hour chuck of alone time, then I couldn’t read (or write, or code). It seemed easier to zone out on the phone instead of immerse yourself into a book, but I have happily discovered that this isn’t true.
so, I challenge you to take the plunge with me this year. Maybe try it for a day, or a week, and see how it changes your day to day. (NB: I do check in to FB every so often, as it is a good tool for messaging and keeping in touch with people. Moderation is the key for me!)