I’ve been thinking a lot about time lately. I’ve been sick for the majority of 2017, and that has left me with a lot of time on my hands. For most of those months, I couldn’t do much more than watch movies; shoot, I couldn’t even focus enough to play games. I’ve been feeling time slipping away from me, and that feeling has only amplified the closer I get to a milestone birthday next month.
Time is really all we have. It’s the most valuable commodity, and I find myself squandering what usable time I do have.
I’ve been thinking about this with more frequency due to a couple of reasons, but the catalyst for making some changes came from an unlikely place: Destiny 2.
While doing my weekly activities in Destiny 2 for the past couple of weeks, I’ve not been getting things that help me level up. It makes me feel like Bungie doesn’t value their players’ time, and I have a problem with that.
So I have deliberately been playing less. I can’t foist the blame upon Bungie entirely; I don’t have to dump as many hours as I have been into a frustrating and less than rewarding experience, particularly when there are an embarrassing amount of games to play.
I’ve also noticed I spend far too much time on social media.
Quite some time back it was recommended to me that I create a Facebook writing page, as well as a Twitter account. Prior to that direction, I’d never wanted to be on Twitter. I prize my time away from my computer and phone. Alas, when I did both of the suggested things (to help promote my writing), I did it to try to reach a wider audience. That hasn’t necessarily happened, yet I find myself spending increased time online.
I need to regroup.
I have some truly wonderful friends that I only interact with online, and that’s honestly why I’ve been spending so much time on social media. But I feel I need to find a balance; I can easily stay connected while indulging my endless perusals far less. There are times I get on Facebook to respond to comments, and by the time I look back at the clock, literal hours have passed. Sure, I’ve done what I needed, and wanted, to, but I’ve also frittered away more hours than I can count.
I’d like to invest some of those hours back into myself.
I’d like to be writing for myself more often. I’d like to read more than I do (which is already quite a lot). I’d like to be creating art more again. I’d like to be having and creating experiences so I can come back with actually useful or interesting things to say, rather than winding up saying nothing at all. I know there is a balance to be found, and I’m actively trying to find it.
I’ve never spent much time on Twitter. I like it well enough, but I don’t often get to interact with people, certainly not as much as I’d like. I will continue to put structured time into it, as I’m committed to writing and improving, and casting that net ever wider to see if I can interest people in my word stew.
I will keep trying.
Facebook will be a bit more difficult. I have many interactions with people on Facebook, people who mean a great deal to me, but I also know hours can pass where I’ve done nothing and interacted with no one. At the end of that time all I have to show for it is, well, I have nothing to show for it.
So, for my own mental tidy, I’m going to be streamlining my use of social media. Sure, I will still check both Facebook and Twitter each day, but I’m going to use each with a purpose. I will continue to post links to each piece I write, as well as anything else I feel may be of interest to people. I will continue to interact with friends, but I will be setting a timer for myself, not to exceed 30 minutes at a sitting. I think of all the things I’d like to do, and if I don’t step up to that plate, I’ll never do them.
Have you ever wished you used social media less? How do you use it now? What is your favorite thing about it? What is your least favorite thing about it? How do you structure your time with it?
I’m still going to be as present and as reachable as ever, I’m just hoping to be a bit smarter about it. And I look forward to all the things I will be scheduling for myself in those freed hours. It feels strange, but, ultimately, right for me.
Thank you for being a part of this. Cheers, friends.