Thursday, January 12, 2012

reality

Over Christmas break, we stayed at my family's cabin for about 10 days. 
10 days without blogging or the blogging world. 
And, can I tell you, it was a glorious 10 days. 

During that time, I had a great discussion with my mom and sisters about blogs. 

The essence of my convos and thoughts on blogs go a little something like this: 

>>>

I blog because it can be something positive for me in many ways. 

There are blogs out there who's authors appear to have it all. They are crazy beautiful, wear beautiful clothes non-stop, live in beautiful places, have beautiful families, and take beautiful vacations.

Is this a real, true-to-life portrayal of themselves or not? 
Why is it that we can only see the good in some blogs and never any hints of life challenges? 
Why do I look at these blogs regularly when it does nothing for me but make me feel ugly, boring, and inadequate?

Blogs like these blind me to all my many, many blessings. 

But my response to those blogs is my own, my responsibility. 

It's their blog. They can choose to post whatever they'd like. That's the great thing about blogging. 
I don't get to have a say in what they do or don't post about. 

So if a certain blog isn't giving me anything of value, learning, or insight, then I'm a dummy for spending time looking at it, no matter how briefly I scroll through the recent posts. 

>>>

Then I decided to do something about all these thoughts. 
I put them into action. 

Since coming home from our cabin trip, I haven't used my time to look at any of those blogs. None.
If a blog makes me feel sad in any way, I'm not going there. 

And, while I'm reducing blog time, 
I've also cut my Twitter activity way down.

(My little sister deleted her Facebook account.)
Brava. 

I can't tell you how refreshing it feels to actively choose to not be a mere bystander, watching other peoples' lives unfold and wishing mine could be more like theirs. 

I'm too busy living and loving my own life, thankyouverymuch.

30 comments:

The Dayleys said...

I've had similar thoughts rolling around. I'm grateful to read through blogs that are on the similar page as I am. It's way to easy to get sucked up into the online world and forget about the wonderful people in your everyday life. I think everyone needs to remember that the internet can wait... but time in the real world passes too quickly.

Urban Wife said...

Thank you for this post. It has given me a wonderful reminder!

Caitlin said...

I've been feeling this way too. As I progress as a blogger, I prefer posts that make me think and make me want to get to know the writer even better. If it's all sunshine and rainbows, or all doom and gloom, or all of one thing or another, I lose interest...and what's the point in reading something you don't enjoy?

For the record, I (obviously) enjoy your blog quite a bit :)

Janssen said...

I think lots of people are feeling this way lately. I unsubscribed to more than 100 blogs just before Christmas. And it feels amazing.

aislin said...

the perfect reminder at just the right time. but i'm going to keep loving your life because it really is quite inspiring :)

Sarah said...

Bravo

Kimberly said...

Amen Sam! I've been feeling this way too! I've been evaluating the things I read, unfollowing blogs that aren't edifying, and realizing more what I want to write about too. As usual, thank you for the encouragement to live thoughtfully. :)

Annie said...

good for you. I posted a couple days ago a music video from youtube and talked about struggling to be patient and have faith in the Lord's timing. Afterwards I considered deleting the post because I was worried it was too unhappy and not fun or exciting enough to share. Thanks for this reminder that we are all real people with trials and as long as I am not using my blog to endlessly complain, a post here and there about trying to work through a struggle is okay. It's real and the blog is about me and (ultimately) for me and my future posterity. I don't want my great grand children to think I had it easy and life was perfect. I want them to know that I had trials too but that I turned to the Lord and worked hard to make the best of them, all while realizing I am truly blessed when I take the time to think about it.
I love your blog because your voice feels real and you seem down to earth. I feel like if we met in person you'd be just what I expected because whether on your blog or off, you are the same. And to maintain that in a world full of pressure to be "perfect," to never show weakness, never be unhappy, and always look like you just walked out of a magazine that is a true accomplishment.
makes me think of this quote by EE Cummings:
"To be nobody-but-yourself -- in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else -- means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting."

(p.s. do I win the longest comment ever award? oops! :)

Janine said...

I completely agree with you. There are too many things to distract us from real life. I'm proud of you.

Noelani said...

I absolutely love this post. Not too long ago, I deleted my facebook account so I could stop narrowing in on others' lives, and stay more tuned into my own. I also have started unfollowing some blogs that seem to be just as you said, as well as ones that don't post for 'them' but more so for a gain of new followers. It's a waste of my time, so why follow something that brings me no joy.

Jenna said...

I always wonder if I'm "that blogger" who seems to have the perfect life. I know I definitely don't. I try to let people in on my reality but I don't want to air all my dirty laundry, either. It's a hard balance.

I find myself longing for the lives of some of the blogs I read. Then I feel sad. But I guess that's a choice, too.

Alyssa said...

Amen Sam. I agree. I find that the blogs I've been drawn towards are ones that tell it like it is (including your sisters!) It just makes me feel happier. And I try to blog the good and the bad. Like the fact that I ate a lot of Dunkin Donuts products today and loved it. Despite the fact that everything I ate violated the "what I'm not supposed to eat" clause. Real life. :) Oh and yay for baby!

AaReAn said...

way to go girl...I have tried cutting things down as well...it becomes consuming if you don't! I commend you for sure!

xoxo
Aarean

p.s. you should come check out my THEIT camera bag giveaway! I think you'd really like it!

Faith said...

:)

Natasha Louise said...

I felt like I blogged this, Life has been a real challenge for me lately and deleting my facebook was one of the best decisions ever! Also I know what you mean about reading others blogs. I did a post yesterday which included a part about comparing ourselves to others and you are so right, when we do that, we are blinding our own blessings. One thing I try my best to do is look for and recognise even the smallest of blessings. Thanks for sharing this lady, you are an inspiration and it's so nice to read something that felt 'human' if that makes sense! :)

Rose said...

BOOM BABY!!!

Erin said...

I've recently considered a "cut back" on my interent life. Maybe to cut out FB because I don't really like it that much anyway. I like to stay in contact with people, but I do that with my closest friends and family anyway... without FB. So yeah... good for you! :)

Erin said...

I love the honesty of this post! I am all about being 100% transparent. If I am struggling, my readers know. If I am joyful, my readers know. I want to portray reality..and life...is not all smiles and sunshine!

Kari said...

I'd say "WORD." but I don't think I can pull that off, so I'll just say...yessss, I know what you mean!

:)

As for me and my blog, I try to focus on the positive parts of my life...but overall, I think my blog is a place of TRUTH...good, bad, funny, random!

Maria said...

I love this so much! I focus mainly on the positives in my life, since my blog is for my mom and my sister to keep up with me, but every now and then I'll disappear with thoughts of saddness! I've cut time down as well, and once school starts next week it'll be interesting to see how things go!

Elizabeth and Kyle @ Love Is the Adventure said...

Your attitudes about blogging and life and family continue to inspire me. Thanks for being strong for yourself and for sharing that here.

Alexis Kaye said...

agreed. One thing I want to add is that I also feel that sometimes the "blog world" makes you feel like you need a lot of stuff. You need 5 cameras, and a different outfit to post every day, and you need to go to the swanky restaurants to blog about them. I don't think that's what blogging is about. Not for me at least. And about the challenges. Sometimes I like to think that their challenges are too painful to post, or that it's not their story to tell (meaning posting it effects other people and would hurt others) because I know there is equality in our struggles. I think brother wirthlin said that. But good for you for cutting out the excess :)

Rachael said...

That's a great attitude about blogs! I agree with you. And it's good to just not read the blogs that make you feel not the best about your own life. I guess that means I'm not going to read yours anymore...kidding!!! :)
Brava to your sister for deleting her Facebook account though! I have thought about doing that, since I rarely even use it, but not quite there to deleting it.

Lisa @ MMT said...

Wow what a great post and reality check! I totally agree with your post and I might be going through my blog list and deleting a few too :)

Kristie Colón said...

good for you, for taking care of yourself, for discovering what is helpful and honest.

and, whenever you want to see a true sh** show you're welcome over to my space anytime ;)

but seriously, i'm glad you got a blogging vacation. sometimes taking some space from the interweb can help with perspective and voice. thanks for sharing yours. i love hearing what you have to say.

Meredith said...

there's one blog in particular that this equals for me. just about the most popular one in the world but ... i can't read it because it makes me all stabby and depressed. i know that's my fault but yeah, i choose not to read it and my life is magically better. crazy.

Sabrina said...

Yay! Love the picture. Congrats you two. And I agree about comparing your life to others. I used to do that and it wasn't good. Everyone has such a different life with different circumstances so it isn't fair to do that anyway. You have an exciting life and it will be more exciting once your baby girl comes! Yay so happy and excited for you guys.

xoxoxo
sabrina

www.rayandsabrina.blogspot.com

sarah marie said...

it is so easy to get caught up in reading blogs... one link leads to another and before I know it I'm subscribed to so many I can't possibly keep up with them all. I love the shared ideas and inspiration and the way technology lets us connect with people, but you're so right... it can lead to, well, basically envy, right? All the other bloggers have perfect homes, gorgeous outfits, perfect marriages, etc.

BUT it is nice to document the good times for yourself; I love going back through some of my old blog posts even if they're nothing much to other people, because they remind me of fun and happy moments I might have forgotten otherwise.

Abby said...

I am so glad that I am not alone in this. Last year after I got married I moved across the country away from my family and everything I loved (except my husband of course) And then I found blogger world. It took me forever to find a job and my husband was at work and school all day, and so I would spend all day waiting for bloggers to post something new. I wasn't even blogging myself because I didn't have a car, friends, or money to go do anything worth blogging about. And I'm pretty sure no one wanted to see pajama outfit posts. I sunk into such a deep depression because I couldn't travel the world, I didn't feel like I had an cooking or sewing talents, my blog was sub par and no one wanted to read it, I couldn't have a baby, my marriage wasn't always picture perfect bliss and on and on and on I would spiral. Everyone always talked about how great blogging made them feel, the friendships, the support, but all it did was make me feel more alone, and keep me from living my life. It is no one's fault but mine, but I have to be careful about how much time I spend on blogger. Thank you so much for posting this!! xoxo

coquettishmish.com said...

Blogging is never easy and I guess when it comes down to it, the ones who posts ONLY the good stuff are the most insecure people. They are afraid to show the world their flaws and that is why they only focus on the great stuff.