Yes. Seriously. But not too seriously. Let’s try not to take anything too seriously cuz it sucks all the fun out of it and the world has plenty of fun-sucking stuff already.
You’re busy. I know. You’ve got emails to answer, reports to write, a commute to make, homework to supervise, kids to chauffeur, meals to prepare, lawns to mow, this to do, and that to do, and some other darn thing to finish before you can sleep. It seems to never end. So how can technology possibly help? Won’t we just be adding Facebook posts to read, Instagram photos to take, and tweets to… well, tweet. How can we possibly find equanimity in the midst of all that?
Honestly, I’m still figuring out the balance myself - could you really believe me if I said anything else? And I’d sure like some company on the journey.
But here's what I’ve figured out so far…
First, we have to center ourselves. Get organized. Get a grip. Get our ducks in a row. Get it all together, and not forget where we put it. Technology is great for the organization stuff – contacts & calendars, notes & reminders, alarms, weather updates, grocery lists, even health tracking. Having it all at our fingertips can be time-saving, energy-saving, and sanity-saving.
- Quick example: I care for an early bird, a night owl, and a can-go-either-way-bird. Catching the bus was hit or miss… until I set three alarms on my smart phone – first bus alarm (10 minutes left), second bus alarm (5 minutes left), and BUS!! Occasionally they’re all out the door before BUS!! (happy smile) Believe me starting the day with everyone making the bus without a fuss adds a great deal to my sense of tranquility.
Next, we reach out to others, because sitting alone in your centered little circle can be tranquil, but it can also be isolated, lonely, or just plain boring. If you’re lucky enough to live near lots of family and friends with plenty of time to get together and shoot the breeze, commiserate, or party with, go for it. If not, FaceBook, Instagram, or an old-fashioned email can help fill the void. Now, I’m not denying that they can also make the void even emptier, but that’s where discernment and the judicious use of social media comes in. The intentional and mindful use of social media can be healthy and fun while helping us stay connected with loved ones.
- Quick example: I hadn’t seen a particular friend in literally 30 years, but we’re FaceBook friends. When I found out I’d be in his city, I messaged him. We met for brunch and a fabulous foray down memory lane. It was truly wonderful and never would have happened without FB. I know from experience that there are happy, healthy ways to connect via technology.
Now you’re centered, connected, and ready to release all that positive creativity into the world. Create art, create scrapbooks, create music. Create a life. Your life. There’s photos to take, journals to write, art to make, stories to tell. Maybe it’ll be just your world, just for you. Maybe you’ll turn it into a blog, or some stunning Tumblr page. Maybe it’ll be amusing anecdotes you post on FB or haiku on Twitter. Whatever it is it's yours, it's creative, and it's freeing.
- Quick example: My first tweet was from the Eastern States Exposition a.k.a. “The Big E” (the regional fair here in New England) in the Farm-a-rama Building (yes, that’s a real thing) at the incubator where you can watch the little chicks hatch out of their eggs. I tweeted “At the #BigE just hanging with my peeps.” Hardly literature, but it still makes me smile (Uh, oh, now you know the sense of humor you’re dealing with).
So there you go.
Center yourself. Connect with others. Create your life.
Let’s get started.