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IN THIS MOMENT
In this moment…
Today I heard a quote that really spoke to me and my current state of mind. “Wherever you go, there you are.” The podcast I was listening to attributed it to possibly being a Mark Twain quote, but after researching it before posting this article I can’t find a sole source so I’ll leave it as it is.
That quote really spoke to me for a few reasons. I’ll warn you, I’m going to ramble before I get to the point. Around this time last year was when I decided to create my website in order to share Minimalism with a wider audience. Maybe you already know that. What you don’t know is only a few weeks before I created this webspace I had decided I was going offline altogether. (I’m a Luddite at heart, y’all.)
When the idea of this website came into my mind I suddenly found myself on the fence between two extremes. You see- I could recognize that Facebook, among other things, was stealing my time and attention away from my priorities. On the other hand, I could see how creating a website would give me a Minimalist-friendly hobby that wouldn’t add to the physical clutter inside my home, and could potentially allow me to provide for my family financially.
The pros outweighed the cons and I consented to diving into the webspace instead of opting out of it.
Blogging: One Year Later
Here we are a little over a year into my blogging journey and I have discovered a few things. The first 6 months I threw myself into my work wholeheartedly. The excuse I would tell myself when I felt guilty about the time my work stole away was, “This is only for a little while. If I commit to building this website as a business now, the blog gurus say that I’ll be doing this right and in the long run be grateful when I can relax.” Wrong. I burnt out.
Don’t get me wrong, I felt moderately successful for a new blogger. I had hit goals I wanted to reach like having over 35,000 page views in only a month’s time. I had over 500 subscribers to my email list without really even knowing what I was doing. I felt like I knew what I was doing in the sense of creating a foundation for my business. I was making a little extra money, and I was doing all the “right” things according to the blog guru people. But it wasn’t enough for the standards I had set for myself, and I wasn’t happy. Not really.
In July I took about a month off from blogging because if I didn’t I knew I’d wad it all up and throw it away to escape the mental stress. That’s my M.O. When I feel too much pressure I give myself permission to stop. Some people would call me a quitter. Others would say that I know myself well enough to know when enough is enough.
Getting to the point…
I ramble through that backstory to tell you that around November or December of this year the same feelings of craving Minimalism and needing distance from the webspace crept in on me. This time I couldn’t deny their truth, and I knew it was time to realign my priorities. I can honestly say that I gave this website all that I had to give last year (which to be honest wasn’t as much as I wished I could have considering I’m a full-time stay-at-home-mom with no breaks for free time).
When I received a new phone as a Christmas gift from my spouse I knew what I had to do. I didn’t add any time stealing apps onto it. No Facebook. No Instagram (yuck! IG always feels like drudgery to me). The only app I added was Pinterest because I use it as a search engine and not very much for entertainment frankly because looking for stuff isn’t that much fun for me.
Now we’ve come full circle back to the quote that I mentioned in the first paragraph. “Wherever you go, there you are.” Without all those addictive, time-stealing apps on my phone I feel like I can really be where I am when I’m there. I have a lot of work to do before I can say that I’m really present though. I still feel myself trying to escape inside my head and not live life and face it when things feel uncomfortable, but I’m moving in the right direction.
I’m fortunate enough to be one of few Millennials that can remember a childhood with very little technology. I can remember what it felt like to truly be present in a moment. I can remember what it feels like to be REALLY bored with nowhere to turn so I have to improvise entertainment or make conversation with the person next to me. Those things are uncomfortable, and it’s a hell of a lot easier to just press a button on my phone and turn my mind off. But that’s not living. Not really.
What are you doing to live a more meaningful life? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
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