Solitude vs. Social Media

Solitude = alone with your thoughts.

Social media = alone with everyone else’s thoughts.

In the former, you arrive at conclusions based on what you are thinking.

In the latter, you arrive at conclusions based on what everyone else is thinking.

Solitude shapes your opinion by forcing you to spend quality time inside your own head.

Social media shapes your opinion by baking it inside an echo chamber created by algorithms.

That’s not to say there isn’t value in what other people say.

Quite the opposite. Challenging your own perspective is important for the global discussion.

But, what value is there in being reactive?

An approach like this doesn’t take all perspectives into account, nor does it take the time to get to the heart of the issue.

And is it worth spending so much time analyzing what someone else says, anyway?

Maybe. If what they say affects your life.

But, most things people say don’t.

So, why do you listen to them?

Or me?

Going in Search of Your Treasure

Social Media Detox: Day 9

What did you want to be when you were a kid?

Did you ever achieve your dream?

Did you ever find your treasure?

If not, why?

It’s hard to pinpoint the exact moment when the dreams of our youth begin to falter, because I think it’s a process that sneaks up on us.

Before we know it, we’re miserable in our job, in an unhappy marriage, and/or just plain dissatisfied with life.

This is often blamed by the amount of responsibility we accumulate over our lives. Once we start a career, have a family and a mortgage, our dreams tend to fall by the wayside. We spend too much energy in ways we never anticipated during our youth.

But, the reality is more closely associated with the fear that we’re not good enough. This is a bigger energy drain than the responsibilities we garner just by living our lives.

We abandon our dreams of finding treasure, or our “Personal Legend”, as Paulo Coelho calls it in “The Alchemist” (which you may or may not have seen me mention in 1-to-all of these posts), and so we stop searching.

When we stop searching for our treasure, life’s meaning begins to fade.

But we are creators.

We have to create.

So, if you want to search for treasure again, I’ve got a shovel you can borrow.

What I Did Today

Novel writing

Freelance writing for startup blog

Meeting with my cousin’s video game development team

Something I Learned Today

Those who really want gold mine for it on a daily basis until they find it or die trying.

Something I Read Today

“[Creative people] use their responsibilities as excuses for not pursuing their dreams. They underestimate the power of starting small and taking consistent actions.” -Srinivas Rao, “How to Make Creative Ideas Happen by Organizing your Life into Projects”

Twitter is an Old Cat Lady

Social Media Detox Project: Day Two

Twitter is like an old lady who leaves milk out on her porch.

The milk she leaves is Likes, Replies, and Re-Tweets.

Twitter users are like cats who come to the old lady’s porch every day looking for milk. Some meow or purr in exchange for milk, some just kind of hang around and watch other cats meow and purr. Many start to live at the old lady’s house and overindulge in milk.

And the old lady will leave out all sorts of stuff. Some days, there might be milk, others none at all. And some days, it may not even be milk; maybe it’s soda, junk food, rabid animals–the old lady has dementia, you see.

Those of us who choose to do a social media detox are like the cats hanging out in the neighbor’s yard, on the other side of the fence.

My experiment of only using Twitter through Buffer is like meowing every day from behind the fence. I don’t approach the porch. But I meow every day at the other cats who hang around the old lady’s house and drink her milk every day.

From behind the fence, I can’t tell if the cats on the other side are paying attention, or if the old lady leaves out any milk or not. It doesn’t matter. Because, behind the fence, in the neighbor’s yard with other cats, I have everything I need already. I just like to meow at the old lady’s porch.

So, what happens when the old lady sees that the milk has been untouched?

She will stop leaving out milk.

But, that doesn’t matter, because we cats in the neighbor’s yard don’t need her milk. We just want to bring her cats to the yard, because we have milkshakes and are happy to share.

And if the old lady’s cats hear us meowing every day, eventually, some of them might get curious and investigate the neighbor’s yard.

And they will see that we are happy behind the fence.

Hopefully, they will join the milkshake party.

And if only one new cat joins, I will count that as a success.

What I did today

  • Write novel 90 mins
  • Budget for July
  • Exercised 30 mins
  • Worked on pitches for my freelance writing gig

Something interesting I read today

Focus is a Privilege by Roxanna Asgarian.

This reminded me of the obligation that comes with such focus. If we have the time and resources to focus on something that matters to us, we should absolutely spend more time doing that, because not everyone has it so easy. Who knows? Maybe our focus could spawn a project that would help those with greater needs.

Something interesting I learned today

That everyone needs a good milkshake.