Two weeks ago, I was drowning in paperwork, meetings, writing, and coaching. Flailing. OMGee. Send me a life preserver.
I decided one Sunday evening that what I needed STAT was to create some margin in my time for the upcoming week. The tasks on my plate were all “have-tos,” so there was no putting off or choosing to not do one of them. Also, I’m a big believer in never compromising small self-care tasks like reading, journaling, or praying/meditating, so taking time away from my 30 minutes of me-time with my coffee was not an option.
As I mulled over my plight (anxiety), I had an “AHA” moment- social media had to go for 4 days of the workweek, and I would reenter FB land on Friday, when the week was coming to a close and my tasks were completed. I normally spend 10 hours a week alone on social media for my women’s networking group between content development, event planning and communication, and general engagement. Throw in my business page, and while I am not a FB junkie, I do like to catch up with the goings-on of the day that people post after the end of my workdays, so let’s say 13-15 hours a week is consumed on social media. Right there I found the time I needed. 13-15 extra hours is a lot of time for squeezing in more work!
So I did it. I fasted all but returning some messages that came through which were pertinent to respond. I found myself one day mindlessly clicking the icon on my phone and then had to exit out ASAP- it was totally subconscious like mindless eating. Some personal observations during my 4 days off FB,
1. Surprisingly, I felt an incredible sense of FOMO- the world was happening and I felt really disconnected. A friend had a baby, and I wasn’t one of the first to see her pics. Another friend was doing some cool things on her FB business page celebrating 5 years of business.
2. Although I felt like I was missing out on some exciting things, I also felt like I dodged being sucked into Latinagate post Superbowl and impeachment political posts. I didn’t miss the FB debates for sure.
3. I found myself feeling much calmer each morning not laying in bed and jumping on FB to see what I’d missed since I got off it the night before. I think millions of people worldwide do just that. I felt more at peace each morning and focused on my morning me-time centeredness tasks.
4. I really did create more time to get things done. We’ve become so accustomed to social media as a way of life and needing of our time, but until we go without it on vacation or a self-imposed fast, we don’t realize how much time it is taking from our lives. Don’t get me wrong. Most of the time I find good value in my interactions on social media, but the time away led me to deciding I needed to tweak my day to day consumption plan to at least sticking with the practice of not going on first thing in the morning. I didn’t do that perfectly last week, but probably 3/5 days, but on the three I did, I found that small slice of morning peace with my morning joe was much greater when I was disciplined enough to stay off the Book.
We’re all busy. We all need to make margin for inner peace and quiet, for exercise, or to get shtuff done. Where can you create time?