Let’s talk about disconnecting today okay?
Raise your hand if you’ve never got your smart phone far from reach. Raise it even higher if you check in (social media, wordpress, facebook) at least a half dozen times of day. I’m guilty of both of these and since starting this blog I find I’m even more over-connected than I was before. Pre-blog I’d check in to read a couple of my favorite blogs from time to time but I didn’t spend nearly as much time “connected” to the interwebz.
Ironically, the inspiration from this post came from my mother. She was heading out one day and I asked her to give me a shout when she arrived at her destination and she looked at me square in the eyes and said “what for?”. I couldn’t believe it – it’s natural to me to check in with friends and family throughout the day because I have the power to. It’s just normalized isn’t it? Call me when you get there! Call me when you leave there! Call me when you’re on your way. You get the idea. The point is, my mother comes from a generation where smartphones, internet and the ability to be over connected simply didn’t exist. She’s told me on many occasions that she’d head out for the day and only check in at the end of the day when she’d walk back in the door – not because she didn’t want to but because the possibility didn’t exist.
I spent the next few days analyzing my habits and I was alarmed at how over-connected I am.
5 confessions from this over-connected momma
- I spend an obscene amount of time perusing social media without actually accomplishing anything productive
- I sometimes surf randomly without purpose because it’s become part of a ritual. It often feels like I’m going in circles.
- I often check my phone notifications in the middle of the night if I happen to wake up. Gross.
- The first thing I do in the morning is check my Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest notifications. Even more disgusting.
- When I have a moment to myself my instinct is to hop online and see what’s shaking in the mom blog community.
Clearly, I have a problem. I’ve somehow been sucked up into the hustle and bustle of the revolving door that is the internet which believe you me never sleeps. Never. There’s always something happening right? Awesome twitter discussion! More gorgeous Instagram photos to check out! Pinterest pins to organize neatly to your boards! Posts to write! Emails and comments to answer! Technically speaking you can never be truly done with the internet especially when you are a blogger. Am I right?
But that right there is the problem isn’t it? How and when do we call it quits? I knew this was getting out of hand when I’d spend long nights behind my computer screen perusing pinterest when I should be drafting posts and basically not being productive.
In that moment I knew something had to change.
How I’m breaking up with my habit of being over-connected
I created a blog workflow. I’ve realized that blogging takes time. Easily three to four times the amount of time I naively assumed I’d have to invest. There’s far more involved than simply writing and publishing posts. Since opting to monetize my blog and try to make a little extra cash from this space I’ve had to explore ways to make the process less time consuming and more automated. I’ve been experimenting with different options and have finally found a system that is working quite well for me. It helps cut down the number of hours I’m sitting behind the computer and makes blogging more enjoyable since it removes some of the stress that comes from tedious tasks like promoting posts and being ever-present on social media.
I’ve amended my morning routine to include a “tech free” meditation session. My morning routine is truly a saving grace. It’s my “me” time where I can center myself and focus on making my day a positive one. Instead of heading straight to the computer I sit, enjoy a strong cup of coffee and allow myself to be alone with my thoughts.
Phones are left in our kitchen at night. No electronic devices in the bedroom. This is truly a no brainer and a must for me. I plug my phone to be charged over night and forget about it. Having it in my bedroom really deprived me from relaxing and getting a restful sleep. Instead of perusing blogs before bed I now read an actual book which allows my brain to disconnect and my body to relax prior to falling asleep.
No blog/internet work after 9pm. This was a hard change to make because getting blog related work done throughout the day is rather difficult when Margsy is having an especially fussy day. Most nights I’d take advantage of her early bedtime by working on the blog late into the night. It left my brain feeling wired because I constantly felt like I was racing against the clock to get things “done”. Now, I shut down the computer around 9pm regardless of what is left to be done. Although my type A personality hates leaving things unfinished I’m far happier and more relaxed.
Remind myself that the blog, internet, Instagram, twitter, emails, comments and followers will be there tomorrow. This is probably the most effective strategy for combating being over-connected as a result of living in a technology driven society. Despite my best efforts to get things done in a timely matter I sometimes can’t. Life gets in the way ya know? And, I’m slowly learning that it really isn’t as big of a deal as I’ve convinced myself it is. The internet in all it’s fast-paced glory will be there tomorrow. Self-care comes first!
Like this post? Pin it to Pinterest!
How do you disconnect?