Thursday, April 11, 2019

Snoozing, Ghosting, and Now Starring Me

One of my greatest talents as a blogger is coming up with a post idea, thinking about that post idea, thinking even more about that post idea, and sitting on that post idea for so long that it morphs into something else entirely.

The one nugget of good news about this process is that the marination process ultimately lands me at a better and more insightful post. That said, I hate that this process is a thing. It has caused me to realize it's symptomatic of a greater issue of my own making, and it needs to change.

It all really clicked when I saw this in my Instagram feed yesterday.

Y'all, isn't this the damn truth?!? It was that moment of painful realization that I have become exemplary at ghosting me. I spend all this time with me, but I'm also not really present like I want to be. 

And, well, that sucks.

Truth be told, the genesis for the post was the snooze button. I wanted to talk about how the snooze button is a lie that we all tell ourselves. I mean, y'all, has anyone ever been truly refreshed by that extra nine minutes of sleep? 

I wanted to write about the lie of the Facebook snooze button. If you're not familiar, Facebook allows you the ability to "snooze" a person or page from showing up in your feed for 30 days. Great idea in theory, but here's the thing, they come back. What I've also realized with that evil Facebook overload algorithm is that at the end of those 30 days said person and/or page comes back into your feed exponentially more. That's obviously a larger sign of the toxic environment Facebook can (and does) create.

I'm trying more and more to have confidence in the unfollow button. Odds are if I don't want to see something for a month, a month later the energy that source provides isn't going to magically improve. Also, here's the deal, I don't generally even remember who/what I unfollow. So, obviously, that wasn't something I needed in my life.

Anyway, before I go and give myself a social media gold star, I have to share the other side of this. Oftentimes, I snooze me and my actual interests. It's so easy to spend time in virtual places and spaces that don't actually matter. It's even easier to pretend these bring meaning. Spoiler Alert - They don't. There are a million corners of the internet that I can pass time, and sure, they allow me to pass time, but what the heck else am I getting? Not a whole lot.

Because here's the thing, I need to get out of my own way. I need to stop letting myself come up with terrible excuses and reasons for not doing what I really want to be doing - what I was meant to do. Not just want I was meant to do, but what I want to do. I know what brings me all the joy, I know what joy and gifts I can bring. Each day I don't follow this path and choose to be passive in my own story, I write another chapter in Talent Hoarding and Shitty Excuses: Andrea's Memoir That Could Be Avoided If She Would Just Change The Narrative She Creates.

As I sit here, I shake my head because clearly the universe is trying to get my attention as of late. I could recount all of the moments from the last week in books, in TV, in conference presentations, and all of the corners of my life, but alas I will not. Suffice it to say the universe is clearly all, "What the heck other sign are you waiting for, lady?" right now.

I cannot keep writing this post. I don't mean this literal post, but I know this post is on this blog in a number of different ways. There are a number of different analogies I've made because I'm stalled in the same damn place.

Last summer, I stood in front of a room of college women talking about fear. I told them the fallacy in the phrase "What would you do if you were not afraid?" Because here's the deal, fear is always going to be in the equation. The actual question is "What are you afraid to do, but you're going to do it anyway." As I sit here today, I need to take that advice from the 9 Months Ago version of myself.

Here's the thing, I have the answers. I have the time. I have the energy. I just have to use it. It's that simple. It always has been. But at the same time, it's that hard. That's what this post is really about, and that's what I need to tell myself. Taking on these risks and challenges, as I fully embrace what I want to do and where I want to be is scary af. 

Scary AF? Yes. Worth it? So damn much.

I'm going to continue to write this post until I don't. I could tell you this is the last one - For real this time. No, no, seriously, for real, for real. However, that means nothing. What I need to do happens beyond a bold declaration. I'm going to keep doing the same thing over and over again until I don't. And that break is entirely on me. I can't write my way out of this one, and I need to stop pretending I can.

After I hit publish today, I need to step away. I could sit here and wait for the likes and the comments and the clicks, but y'all, I don't need that. And yes, it'll take a few repeats and reminders before that truly sets in. I need to like how I'm spending my time, I need to comment on my own actions, and I need to click through on the stuff I am capable of doing.

The only way I stop snoozing, stop ghosting, and start starring is to actually do that thing right now. Step one is to actually take step freakin' one. And then after that, I have to keep going. I can always write another post, but I only get so many shots at actually doing things right.

So, bye.