I think it's the 24/7 nature of it. The blogosphere simply does not stop. There is always an email to write, a comment to answer, a tweak to make or another opportunity to pursue.
If you've been blogging for any length of time, it's likely you understand what I mean. If you're new to blogging, consider yourself warned.
So, I took the last few weeks off. Did my stats go down? Yep! Did I have brief moments of panic that I was going to lose momentum? Uh huh. But life goes on. And my family enjoyed a more "present" and less on-edge me…I think.
What I Did
Well, other than paying a whole lot more attention to the real life around me, I pondered and I planned.
I've decided I'm tired of living in a constant state of frustration. Whether it's snapping at my kids, whining to my husband, being grumbly about what others have that I don't or feeling frustrated that I can't seem to accomplish all the things I want to accomplish, I have successfully planted myself in a solid state of discontent.
Who wants to live like that? Not me!
Am I Lacking Balance?
I'm a firm believer in the truth setting us free. So in an effort to face the truth, I decided to ask myself some hard questions. I grabbed a notebook and a pen and brainstormed some "Am I Lacking Balance?" questions. Wanna see 'em? Are you sure?
- Do important things in life fall through the cracks?
- Am I protective of the computer and resist letting anyone else use it — even when I'm not — "just in case" I might need it?
- Do friends or family make comments — either in a concerned way or a joking way — about my computer use and how much time I spend on it?
- Am I not doing things now that I used to do routinely because more and more of my time is spent online?
- Have I gained weight or gotten out of shape?
- Am I drawn to the computer when I'm stressed out or overwhelmed?
- Do I use the computer as an escape from the messiness of daily life and when I simply don't want to face my daily responsibilities?
- Do I think about what's happening online when I'm not?
- Do I often feel guilty for the amount of time I spend online?
- Do I get frustrated when someone interrupts me while on the computer?
- Am I noticing attention-getting behaviors in my kids because I'm not "present" otherwise?
- Conversely, am I noticing "fly under the radar" behavior in my kids because they know when I'm on the computer, I'm likely not going to notice what they're doing?
- Do I find myself cutting corners in other areas of my life because I just don't care as much anymore and would prefer to spend time on the computer instead?
- Do I have FMS (the Fear of Missing Something)–that something is going to happen online when I'm not there and then I'll lose out because of it?
- Do I panic if I forget or misplace my phone because it will mean I can't check Facebook, Twitter or email while on the go?
- Have I or am I tempted to compromise morally in order to "keep up" or "get ahead" with other bloggers and other people I see online?
- Do I accept projects or do things online that I don't find enjoyable because I feel like I'll be "left behind" or my blog will suffer somehow if I don't?
- Does my online life consume my thoughts such that I'm constantly thinking about it and can't "turn it off"?
- Are my first thoughts of the day and my last thoughts at night often centered around what's going on with my blog or online?
- Do I check stats, Twitter mentions/DMs, comments, emails incessantly?
Please know that I am in no way saying blogging is evil and if you can answer "yes" to any of the above questions, you have a major problem.
I don't think blogging is evil and I have no intention of cutting it out of my life. I do, however, know that while I didn't answer "yes" to many of the questions above, I answered "yes" to more than I'd like.
Like I said last time, I spend far too much time comparing myself to others. But that's a waste of me.
I want to find my own groove. I wanna do my own thing.
I'm rethinking everything.
And I'm cutting back.
Honk (ok, maybe share it) if you can relate.