Tag Archives: lent

#31Days: Day Twenty Two (or, the dismissal of social media)

For Lent this year, I gave up the big 3: Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. On February 13, I pulled the saved log ins for all three from my work computer, personal laptop, iPad and iPhone – and while I’m startled anyway at the myriad of access points I had, I was more startled to feel so disconnected from people.

For about two days.

The first weekend, I felt very free. I could do whatever I wanted and it did not matter what people (near or far) were posting, saying, filtering and tweeting. I did not have to answer to anyone or any platform. Nobody was able to know where I was, how I felt or what I thought unless they called me. Calling me! How novel.

Now, I had my reasons for disconnecting and they ranged from things or people I didn’t want to bother myself with seeing to just me as a human trying to think about only me. I also know I am not the first and won’t be the last to disconnect from social media. I did not break new ground here on the stress or anxiety caused by seeing everyone else’s ‘fun’ or ‘perfect’ life, FOMO is not something I invented, etc.

What I am here to tell you is I am proud of myself for spending 46 days only answering to people I saw in real life, heard over the phone or to myself. I spent 46 days filling my time with cleaning my apartment, reading books (! real ones), getting adequate amounts of sleep or exercise and face time with people and activities. In those 46 days, I had no desire to check Facebook or Insta to compare, I did not feel guilty for staying in alone on a Saturday and I did not let my mind wander into the dark places of anxiety or loneliness.

I like to challenge myself – to see what I can live with or live without, to test my limits of endurance and willpower. I thought of this Lenten challenge this morning when my instinct was to immediately open Instagram as soon as the clock hit 7 a.m. I was up at 6, working (not the intention of these 31 days, but I digress) and was itching to check social media. For what? Good Q.

As the months pass, I consider giving it all up again – or at least taking a hiatus. Could you? Would you? It’s freeing, I tell ya.

Think about it.

Xo,

Cb

This is the twenty-second post in a series, 31 Days of 6 a.m. To see a list of all posts from the month of October, click here. If you would like to have these posts delivered directly to you, enter your email address in the form located at the top right of the home page.

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the tightrope

Grow up.

What did those 2 words make you think of? It’s a mixture for me, these days. Generally, if someone refers to ‘growing up’, I think of my 15 year old self learning to drive, or my 18 year old self writing the goodbye poem for the back of our programs at graduation. I think of my little sister or of Audrey & funny pictures with Hollister t-shirts and makeup that didn’t match our skin.

Lately, though, I think of debt and budgets and rejection emails. I think of finals for the last time and moving boxes and big, empty spaces and question marks. I think of how my day to day is so much different than what I imagined it would be back in 2007 when I prepared for college.

No, I wouldn’t change any of it. Well, most of it. I would like to live it again. That’s how I feel lately, that I would like to just reset some days — go back an hour, go back to lunchtime and have those hours again. I’d like to go back to living in Kappa and laughing, go back to dorm room nights with Marci, relive simple days, big days, small days; go back to firsts rather than lasts.

But then I remember, “stay here, Chelsie.” I hear it, that voice. The small voice that has slowly been becoming louder over the past few months. I think it’s a mixture of things, but my happiness project has heightened my awareness of most things: my relationships with others, my inner voice, my potential, my failures and the presence of God.

So today, and lately, I have to consciously remind myself to be thankful, be grateful, to find the good. I have been struggling, because some days I wonder if there will be a day that I won’t have to struggle. Don’t we all ask that?

Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, marking the season of Lent. I am going to give up carbonation, my vice – my diet dr. peppers and diet pepsi. Why? For starters, I don’t really want all those chemicals in my body on the regular. But mostly, because Jesus has showed me the importance of a content heart, the unbelievable life that can be found under the shelter of Grace. The least I could do is honor that, to focus on something other than me. “Forget about myself to change myself” as Gretchen Rubin wrote.

Tonight, I needed to ramble. Thank you for listening.

Xo,

Chelsie

The process of growing up is to be valued for what we gain, not for what we lose
-C.S.Lewis

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