Detox · Personal · Self Care · Social Media

Post Detox: 3 Weeks

It’s been about 3 weeks since I’ve returned to social media. Honestly it’s not as exciting. People don’t really communicate through these platforms. Of course I don’t exactly bare my soul either. So, in that case do I keep it? Does it add to my life? If others don’t really communicate as directly then why keep it?

There are groups I’ve joined that I value. I may pair down who I have ‘friended’ on those platforms and keep it strictly to those I’m close to. Why just add to add if I know of someone or if they were an acquaintance of mine years ago? Not that I don’t care about those individuals, but why let everyone have a window into my personal life? Sure I don’t exactly share very personal things, but if and when I do share something personal I want it to feel like a safe space. No I’m not a millennial.

This detox was good for me. It showed me who kept in contact during it and who didn’t. I’m sure some maybe thought I wanted personal space, but wouldn’t I want to still hear from friends? Especially when taking a long break.

Detox · Personal · Self Care · Social Media

T-Minus 4

Today marks 4 weeks until my social media detox is over. 3 months has felt sluggish and yet sped by. Can I go back to the main social media platforms? I still have one more month of chosen quiet. I don’t know that I’ll return. If I choose to it’s to keep in contact with a select flew.

Part of me wants to scrub it from my life. Even to add into the mix Good Reads. Recently Jesnevertheless made a great point. She mentioned how sites like Good Reads has turned the joy of reading into a competition rather than a means to share one’s love of reading. I’m a sucker for a reading goal. This year I’m barely over half way to my own reading goal and that’s ok. Instead of focusing on enjoying the books I’m reading I could be internally freaking out I’m not going to reach my 2021 challenge. My focus is misplaced.

I also, have felt like book blogging is in its self a competition of sorts. It doesn’t help that I NetGalley request splurge like a drunk going on a shopping spree at midnight. I’ve felt convicted in this department. No more requests!

So will I be back on the usual social media suspects next month? Potentially and possibly not. I have provided direct contact to a few friends and for the most part there has been silence during my detox. Maybe they thought I want privacy or something. Who knows. All I know is that social media is a communication crutch to replace direct communication. You’re viewed like you’ve died if you leave the platform and welcomed back when you return.

Detox · Self Care · Social Media

Detox Week 2

Today is 2 weeks of me surviving being off of social media. It felt at first challenging to not want to log on, but now that I’ll be going into week 3, that urge is dissipating. I think I’m starting to get used to the silence. It’s like being invisible, though you are very much alive.

Will I return come January 15th/16th? I might. I might not. Will returning change anything? The only thing I see it changing is providing an easy way for people to stay in contact. That’s it. Will people reach out more when and if I return? I highly doubt it. Maybe I’m transforming into a pessimist, but when society lives virtually is it really all that surprising?

True connection has been turned into a little box to type, add cute emoji’s to match the mood and sentiment. Sterile. As a society we’ve settled for digital affection. Our brains have gotten used to our Pavlovian response to notifications. Will our virtual life get likes? Does anyone give a bleep? It seems we are gradually going from flesh and blood humans into technical beings. Is that progress? Honestly I believe it’s by design, planned and not an accident. We’ve become digital zombies and that’s what they want.

Books · Personal · Self Care · TBR

Overbooked

I love to read. I have ever since I was little. It was second grade when I began to read solo, but still would enjoy my mom reading to me. The books that captured my imagination as a little kid were: The Faraway Tree series by Enid Blyton, The Little House series, The Moomins series, and of course Dr. Seuss books.

Discovering Booktube was life changing. The first Booktuber that caught my attention was Sasha Alsberg. Her love of reading, books and wait she gets sent books to review? I want book mail. I created a book blog, read 5 books and posted reviews, then searched out companies looking for reviewers.

Fast forward 3 years and I have over indulged. I know I review not merely for NetGalley, but a number of other PR companies. I have a challenge saying, “No,” to requests since I’m already over my head in my ARC TBR, but that one that got away haunts the back of my mind. What if the book I decline to review, is my fave book for 2020?

I do need to be more selective and whittle down my TBR. I’m thankful to be a book blogger. I just don’t want to loose my love of reading because of it.

Books · Personal · Self Care · TBR

July Library Haul

When you haven’t been to the library in over a year and get the craving. I splurged and probably will read maybe 4-5 out of the 18 I got. I like having plenty of variety. I miss going to the library and have missed it. My local libraries are alright. The one closest to me has a great YA section.

Do you like your local library? Do you prefer the library or bookstore? Have you ever decided to strictly get library books and then choose from there what is own worthy?

Have you read any of the above books? If so which ones (without spoiling it for me) are worth reading?

Friends · Personal · Self Care

Whore Out My Heart

Lately I feel like I keep getting the word of knowledge to guard my heart. I am so needy for friends and wanting constant communication. I want to ideally be best friends with everyone and yet, those I’ve poured out a lot of my heart to have burnt me. I know no one is perfect. Life happens and friendships don’t always pan out, but I’m feeling fragile lately.

Why did I title this post Whore Out My Heart? Not a whore in the promiscuous sense, but in the emotional sense. I’m like a dang puppy anytime I make a new friend. I guess I definitely have an addictive personality, friendship addiction. I get so excited about having a new friend that I latch on like a barnacle. It’s unhealthy of me. I need to stop being so flippant with my heart and be selective in who I truly open up to. Not everyone is worthy, no matter how much I wish them to be. Yes, that includes family as well. Family doesn’t automatically equal entrance to my heart and soul.

My job was been busy lately and the energy coming off callers has been draining to say the least. Holding my anger in is challenging at times. I’m not a screamer, or yeller, but I abhor rudeness. When I get mad I cry, but that’s because I’m that mad that tears just have to come out. Someone crying or mad I get that. Rudeness just pisses me off.

Do I want real friendship? Yes. Quality over quantity. True friends, kindred spirits, bosom buddies, girlfriends, guy friends. Those I can trust.

I only have a very small amount of childhood friends that I still keep in contact with. Not all friendships make it from childhood to adulthood and that’s ok. It just means more room for authentic friendships.

Personal · Self Care

What’s Your #OneWord?

At an old job of mine we had a library where you could borrow books. One of those books was on the topic of having one word be your focus and theme for the year. Do you have one word for 2019?

I’ve been thinking of what I want my one word to be for this brand new year and I decided on the word: grounded. This word has different connotations. I could be grounded and not allowed to have fun, or I could be grounded in how I view and live out my life.

My reason for choosing this word is that this year I want to focus on what/who helps keep me grounded:

* work life balance

* reading books that will educate and inspire me

* eating healthier

* eating less sugary foods

* exercising by starting yoga & meditation

* having in depth friendships

* loving my partner

* loving my family

* journaling more

* figuring out my faith walk

When I was sick of most of December 2017 I truly learned to focus on deep breathing to calm my anxiety down and to feel better. Last year it seemed like my theme was anxiety and I am determined for that to not repeat its self this year. Being anxious is a horrible feeling and I detest my heart doing dips. I only want that if it’s from a roller coaster at a theme park. This experience made me want to research meditation and yoga. Less coffee would probably help, though who can say no to that delicious beverage?

What’s your 2019 one word? Feel free to comment what yours is below. Looking forward to being inspired by all of you. Here’s to a happy 2019!

Book Review · Books · Self Care

Find Your Awesome

I’m a sucker for self-help books. When I saw the cute artwork on the cover I couldn’t resist requesting the appropriately titled Find Your Awesome. This short book has 30 different ideas on ways that you can learn how to start loving yourself. Some of the suggestions that stood out to me the most were:

* Rocking my life list

I need to make a life bucket list, so I have goals I am always reaching on meeting.

* Hold a burning ceremony

There are things about my past and myself I need to let go of, but my OCD reparative thoughts like to dwell on those things anyway. A burning ceremony of letting go would be acknowledging these things, but then physically letting them go by burning away their hold on me.

* List 10 people you are grateful for

Writing down 10 people I’m grateful for helps me stay focused on the important people in my life who help influence and shape me in who I’ve become through the years.

* Organize something

Organizing is something I like to do briefly, then my piles start up again. Going through my things and only keeping what is essential is therapeutic. I need to do more of it so there is more room in my life for things I truly need, plus I will feel less claustrophobic.

* Unplug

Unplugging from social media occasionally is important and something I want to do more often. It’s never a dire emergency to check notifications. If it’s an emergency the person will call me and leave a voicemail.

* Be unapologetic

I am a classic apology case. I apologize often to where it even annoys myself. I need to stop apologizing, especially when I’m not truly sorry. It’s a bad form of coming across humble and selfless when in reality you aren’t wanting to own your true feelings about something.

* Write your personal manifesto

Writing my own manifesto on how I want to live my life is something I need to do. It’s a way for me to have a nice, firm reminder of what I believe in, stand for and want to accomplish with my existence.

* Decide what matters

Deciding what matters can be a tough exercise.

* Write yourself a love letter

I don’t like being the center of attention, so the idea of writing myself a love letter sounds egotistical, but I need to honestly love me for me and writing it down will help cement it in my mind.

* Design a book cover for your life story

Some day I do want to publish. A memoir might be a tad strange, but to design a unique book cover for it would satisfy my creative side.

These suggestions each speak to me in that they are ways I can uncover who I am down to my core.

What would your answers be to these different suggestions on how we can love and care for ourselves more?

I think with social media when can get so caught up in following other’s lives that we forget to be ourselves, to be our own unique selves. These suggestions help peel off the layers of fitting in, so that we can love ourselves for who we are. I know I don’t always like what I see when I peel back my protective layers, but it’s important for me to truly like myself, even the scary parts of me (body parts, personality, habits).

If you need a uplifting pick me up, go find a copy of this short book. The artwork alone is sweet and inspiring. I received my free digital ARC of Find Your Awesome by Judy Clement Wall care of NetGalley from HCI Books in exchange for my honest feedback. Thank you Judy for an easy to use self-help book that will help society get their life balance back.

Personal · Self Care

No Words

Sometimes you aren’t prepared. This morning my partner mentioned someone had died. I was trying to guess who it might have been. I was not ready for what he showed me.

When he showed me the news headline I immediately cried out, “What? Nooo.” I instantly burst into ugly sobs. I rarely sob. Sobbing at 5AM is not a fun way to ring in a Friday. No, I didn’t know Anthony Bourdain personally. I watched his shows “No Reservations,” and “Parts Unknown”. I’ve watched them many times.

Tony’s shows are funny, heartfelt, snarky at times and make you want to travel the world. He is blunt in his verbiage, but has a heart for people. Tony won’t be forgotten.

It was hard to concentrate at work earlier today because I kept thinking of Tony and wondering why. Why choose to bow out when what ever was ailing him could be resolved with time and patience? I know so many of us struggle with depression. We keep moving forward with smiles plastered on, not letting everyone see behind our perfect looking masks. I don’t know the reasons. We may never know. His own daughter may never know why her dad chose to leave early. I can’t fathom her heartache today.

One thing I do know is Anthony is loved by so many and respected as a chef, author, travel host, Dad, boyfriend, friend, etc. He was a big life figure in the culinary and travel industry.

Part of me wants to curl up in a ball and just sob. This untimely death has hit me hard. I cried more over James Gandolfini. It took me months before I could watch or hear the theme intro song to, “Sopranos.” I usually don’t get this emotional over a celebrity, but these two figures made a giant impact on our world and their passing have left holes in our hearts.

We may not know how we impact others lives, but we do. Even someone we just smile at in passing. That one act of positivity could make someone’s day, it could let them know they are seen and loved.

I hope you are resting in peace Tony. You are loved and admired by many. I am just sad you choose to leave early when you had so much more life to live. You blessed more people than you’ll ever know.