I'm going "offline". For one month. By "offline", I do of course mean that I am ditching my beloved Twitter and Facebook accounts in favor of simpler living.
Why am I pursuing this brief trip into a life less-connected? Many reasons, but my main inspiration came from two places. One: My recent stay at Shanti Retreat, a yoga oasis in Eastern Ontario. The second? A recent blog post by my sisters dear friend Kathryn that documented when she too, challenged herself to go Facebook-free back in 2009 in an effort to raise money for FTD research (Frontotemporal Dementia was my father's primary diagnosis when he became ill).
During my stay at Shanti, I was in awe of the residents' blissful ignorance when it came to current events, pop culture, and news. On the day that I arrived there, Nik Wallenda was set to be making his world famous jaunt across Niagara Falls on a tightrope - a news story that had been splashed across every paper's front page, news stations broadcast, and social media forum for weeks, even months. My hosts at Shanti had no idea who he was.
So fast forward to now; I have been feeling like a slave to the web, and I do not like it. There have been far too many hours sucked away by the vacuum that is the Twitter-sphere, far too many minutes lost to Face-crook. I hate - okay too strong a word- I am disturbed by my constant desire to know all that goes on within my online communities whether it be the grand group of nutritionistas (thanks Meghan Telpner for that word!) I've come to know via tweeting, or the massive amalgamation of media mavens I connect with via Facebook. It bugs me that after a long, busy day away from my "screens", I feel the need to catch up, and as a result spend countless hours scrolling through my feeds, "nourishing" my mind with all the juicy details of the days' events.
It's an addiction. Another obsession that I feel I need to break away from a while, even just to prove to myself that I can.
Granted, I do realize that there are remarkable positive aspects to these daily feeds, and that my being able to build such internet intimacies does not come without benefit. I am grateful for all of the real-life friendships and personal connections I have made with like-minded folk I have been united with online. That I can not deny. I treasure the connectivity that these worlds make possible, and I realize the potent capabilities that they will provide for the growth and development of my forthcoming wellness business.
For now though, I want quiet. I wish to relax that sector of my psyche that thinks I must be in-tune with every little detail, every action, every event that is going on in my www.world.
I want to stop and smell the roses, the lilacs, the freshly cut grass. Hear the birds sing and feel the warm sun on my face and smooth summer breeze against my back.
This July, I plan to read much (I have an extensive reading list of yoga philosophy books for my upcoming teacher training as well as some summer smut; hello Fifty Shades trilogy). I will cook much, and rest much, and also hope to schedule in some long overdue face-time with friends and family that I haven't been able to commit a lot of time to with my recently overloaded calendar and course regime. Presumably, I will be able to allot more time to my writing as well, and thus plan to blog here more often, and will also continue to putter away at my novel.
I have a sinking feeling that this month will feel like a detox in every sense of the word, withdrawals and all, so I plan to prepare and cope accordingly. As suggested by Ms. Kathryn in her facebook-free blog post, I will, by end of day today,log-out and/or suspend both my Twitter and Facebook profiles and remove my internet shortcuts for both. I will delete the applications from my smart phone as well, thus hopefully, removing all easily accessible temptations.
And so, on this final day of updates (I know, talk about drama-queen here, huh?), I ask that you all have patience with me, as I can bet that during this month long mission, I will miss a birthday or two, skip out on an event or three, and I may be tardy in my replies via my now only methods of communication - phone and email.
If anyone wants to chat, please feel free to connect with me here on the blog via my shiny new "Contact Me" tab in the upper left corner of the page. If you already have my personal information, then email me! Text me! Or *gasp* call me! I'd love to see you face-to-face.
I look forward to my quiet, real, and present time away.