First, let me apologize for taking so long to post. The flu bug invaded the Queendom in a big way and took me out for most of February. I'm finally getting mostly caught up.
During the depth of the sinus infection and flu the best I could do was sit and look at my phone or watch television.
I have no attention span to speak of so why I can stare at social media on hours on end, I cannot explain. Maybe because there's so much going on within each app? I know not. What I do know is that I spend stupid amounts of time looking at my phone. How do I know?
My phone tells me.
There is an app on my phone that tells me how much time I spend on various services. When I was sick, I was horrified to find I spent more than 40 hours a week looking at my phone and most of it was on Facebook and Instagram. In the last two weeks, when I've felt better, Those numbers have decreased a bit but still -- more than 30 hours a week.
That doesn't count the time I'm on my computer or my tablet. It's just my phone.
What. The. HELL?!?!
I am horrified.
If I spent as much time working as I do on Facebook, I've have the damn book written. Probably more than one. My house might be clean. I might bake more. Who knows what I might accomplish if I weren't watching silly videos on my phone. What's more, as I've been consciously trying to cut down I am disturbed to find I have a full blown addiction to the stupid thing. I obsess about it. If my phone rings or a notification comes through, I cannot help but look at it. Crap.
1) Are you a bit f**ked?
Well, yes. I'm missing out on a whole lot of things because I'm looking at my damned phone.
2)Could you not be f**ked?
3)Are you, on your own, going to "unf**k yourself?
Well, I can do a bunch of it, but I'm going to need some help. Fortunately, I have a great Queendom and support system.
4)Write down all the things that are f**king you up or have ever f**ked you up and don't lie or leave anything out.
Well, for this purpose I'm just going to list my addiction to social media and my phone. The rest of the list is fairly epic and there's not room here.
5)Honestly tell someone trustworthy about how f**ked you are.
Here I am, telling you.
6)What, that's a lot of f**ked up patterns. Do you want to stop it? Seriously?
7)Are you willing to live in a new way that's not at all about you and your previous, f**ked -up stuff? You have to.
8)Prepare to apologize to everyone for everything affected by your being so f**ked up.
9)Now apologize. Unless you would make things worse.
In progress. Also see below
10)Watch out for f**ked up thinking and behavior and be honest when it happens.
This will be tough. I use social media to communicate with friends and family and work. Now, I'll have to set reasonable boundaries. I'll need help here, for sure.
11)Stay connected to your new perspective.
I'll do that here, but will still need help.
12)Look at life less selfishly, be nice to everyone, help if you can.
This sounds like an excellent plan in general, but especially during Lent.
So there you have it. I have to connect with my life in real life and not escape to my refuge of Facebook and Instagram. I'm going to do that and let you know how it goes. It's going to involve boundaries and remembering while it's wonderful to keep in touch with my friends and family and to read about silly and interesting things online, there is plenty to connect to right here in real life.
Regarding numbers 8 and 9. One of the most haunting and beautiful songs in recent history is "Say Something, by A Great Big World. This song will drop me to my knees every time I hear it. I've read the writers were talking about heartbreak within a couple. For me, it's as if my soul is crying out to me. It's pleading me to be creative, to write to feed the beast within that is yearning for connection. I often say to myself, "I'll just check Facebook and then I'll sit down to write (or sew or paint or garden or whatever). " Instead, I'll get lost on Facebook and then it's time to do something else and I've yet to feed my soul. When that happens I will literally hear the lyrics to this song in my head. This song speaks for and through my soul. It's pleading with me to use my voice -- whether it's writing a book or creating art or just being my soul is asking me to "Say Something." So I will apologize right now to the muse that sits upon my shoulder guiding me to follow my dreams and passion. I'm sorry I ignore you more often than not. I pledge to do better. I promise to feed my soul and to my real connection each day and in every way. I won't be perfect. I will make mistakes, but I will do better. I will say something.
For this week, Queendom, I challenge you to look at how you're spending your time. Could it be spent in a different way? Is there a book in you that needs to get out? Do you need to visit your grandparents or a neighbor? What would happen if you took the amount of time you spent on Facebook and other social media and cut it in half? What might you accomplish? Would you form a connection to another human being? Give time to the local animal shelter? Read a book? Bake a cake? Take a walk?
Let me know what you find out.
Blessed be my friends! I'll talk to you again next week!