Don’t Forget to take out the Garbage June 23, 2014
I spend more time than I care to admit on my social websites. And if you asked me to give them up, my whining would begin; “but it’s fuuuunnnn…” And it is. I think a lot of it has to do with my love of reading and my love of writing. I get to do both here. And I’m learning, too. I've also been inspired more times than I can count, and Pinterest seems like the most beautiful virtual place to vacation. I always sign-off inspired! I've done nothing, but I've felt something.
A little like the feeling that we might get at church or temple. You've sat through the sermon doing nothing, and then you come away with something. Something that wasn't there when you sat down.
I know we've all sat at tables in restaurants and watched half of the diners there peering into their phones or devices while eating together. It appears we've checked out from socializing, even with family at times. But I have to admit that I love it when people are sharing their finds with the people around them. There have been countless fits of the giggles that I've witnessed as they hold up their phone to those next to them with shock and laughter on their faces. We have become very religious about our social networks. And we can complain or click our tongues at it all that we want, but it’s here to stay. (I hope!) We can also embrace it.
My own keep-in-touch-with-friends-and-family ratio has gone way up. In the past, I've kept in touch with family and friends that have moved away with my annual holiday newsletter. Once. A. Year. While receiving their years’ worth of news in the same way or in a neatly written Christmas card with good wishes.
Now? I get to see and hear about their holidays and vacations and kids’ birthday parties and job accomplishments and weekend activities and what they had for dinner and what movie they saw (with their review!) and what animal crawled in through their doggie door last night, as it happens(!) with their photos and status updates! Even if I only comment, “Looks like a fun day!” I’m saying more than what I would have said to them during the whole year through. So, YESWAY, I’m quite happy with my social media obsession.
I often “friend” or “join” other social user’s pages that seem inspiring or fun. If we are going to be so religious about our social networking, we might as well make it like church. Make sure it’s inspiring, fun and a positive influence on our lives. Let it move us forward in life, not weigh us down with MORE bad news, bad relations or bad karma. I don’t watch the news on TV. I get email updates from news organizations to get the highlights, but when I sit down and TRY to watch the news (because I feel like I really should), by the third story, I have to turn it off. Especially if my daughter is sitting close by. It’s depressing. Plugging in only positive influences into our day is a better way to live.
The written word is powerful. It's why I can't make myself throw away those 25 beauty magazines that I've yet to read. (They're full of WORDS!) But we can’t let it be more powerful than us. Don’t feel guilty about being addicted, but make rules. Not just for our kids. For ourselves. No social sites until the dishes are done. Or visit while dinner is cooking. (Set a timer, though, if you don’t like burned pot-roast). Promise yourself you'll get three things done around the house first before you get to sit down and troll. Allow yourself only laptop or desktop computer time for social media and save your phone for checking emails only. I know that MY emails are adding up. (Probably because my Facebook page is so much more fun.) Does anyone else have “255 unread emails?” Be honest.
So do plug-in certain times of the day. Make your social networking the "later," not the necessities. And treat your pages religiously. Stop “friending” or “following” anything or anyone that isn't a positive influence on your day. Don’t let another’s negativity bleed into your day. At least not voluntarily. That’s Garbage-In, Garbage-Out. Dispose and Delete. Promise yourself positive posts only. Good-in, Good-out. And recycle the best ones by sharing. And if you have a minute, come visit a place I spend lots of time in. 🙂 www.Facebook.com/BackToBeingAWoman.com 🙂 Happy Socializing!