computer in the forest with unplug title

Unplug your life

Do you ever have that feeling where you know what you need to do but you also have excuses for not doing it?

That has been me for a number of days. It’s possible the feeling started before that, but it was in the last week that it became strongest.

On Tuesday I posted this on my Facebook Page.

Many, many years ago I went away. I stayed in a lovely little motel for a number of nights and during that time all I did was relax, take walks in nature and write. I ignored the internet except for two short checks in to see messages. There was no scrolling of timelines, just a quick stop by to see if there was anything I needed to reply to and post an update on word progress.

I wrote nearly 50,000 words that week. Now if you’re wondering if that is a lot, NaNoWriMo is all about writing 50,000 words in a month and many of us fail. (Yes, me, the one time I tried I failed…yet I’m considering doing it again this year.)

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes, I am thinking of doing this again. Not the motel part because money, but the focused part. Shall we call it a Writing Staycation? I will be at home, but I will restrict myself from the interwebs except for twice a day to check in, answer messages, tags and emails. I will be uncontactable even by phone between 9 am and 3 pm except for emergencies.

There are many words I want to make and stories I need to finish. The Muse is insistent that the Wiccad Witches need their time, so that’s nine origin stories to write/finish and the new story to begin. City of the Wiccad needs finishing. Curse of the Bard needs editing. And Gabby’s Patreon Character of the Month story must be finished, edited and posted. I’m too connected to the interwebs and I need to focus on those stories and on myself. I have my own transformation which is well underway and needs focus.

I know you understand and support me in this, and I need that. FOMO is a real condition and I suffer from it. (If you’re not sure what FOMO is, it’s the Fear Of Missing Out). The world moves at a fast pace online and it’s full of fascinating people and cat pictures, but nothing ever gets done when you’re too busy watching other people’s journey instead of walking your own.

So, starting tomorrow, yell at me if you see me on here when I’m not meant to be. And wish me luck and a high word count.

But how?

The art of unplugging is getting harder and harder. FOMO is real, as is the growing addiction in people to find validation in interaction, likes, and comments. (Harder and harder to do on Facebook, they say that there is a growing trend to like instead of commenting and interacting and that is turning into viewing and not liking… Both of which I find to be rude trends especially if someone actually needs feedback.) Which means, people are becoming increasing depressed by social media, so actually end up on there more searching for their fix.

I’ve noticed myself developing bad habits, and falling on to the rude side of the scale. I can sit somewhere, like gymnastics, and scroll through Twitter or Facebook while not actually seeing a damn thing. It’s understandable why I’m doing it, you generally have to scroll through a million posts to find anything that is an actual post from someone. But still, it’s a waste of time and my time is precious.

I knew I needed to put my foot down and focus my time where it was needed. This meant not spending time on social media in the ways I have been, and not being on call for instant contact across social media and messengers.

It meant allowing myself to be a little more zen and focus my attention on one thing free of distraction.

Time to unplug

With this in mind, I turned my Wi-Fi off on my computer at about 8:30 in the morning yesterday. I put my phone out in the lounge (I was at my computer desk for once), and I opened word.

By the time I stopped for lunch I had written just over 6000 words. 2500 for Gabby’s Character-of-the-Month Patreon story, 3000 for Wiccad Witches, and 600 for City of the Wiccad book 3. In the afternoon I edited a 1200 word starter for one of the Wiccad Witch origin stories. I felt amazing that I had accomplished so much.

It was hard, especially in the afternoon, not to just reach for my phone and check up on everyone and everything. I admittedly did do a little scroll early evening when I heard that Stephen Hawkings had died. (What an incredible and inspirational man!)

Then, after Burlesquercise, I allowed myself my time to log in properly and reply to everything that I needed to. I resisted the urge to scroll through the timelines and end up for another hour doing so when I needed sleep and to stop using screens.

Today is day two.

I’ve already started writing for Gabby. I’ve done this blog post (it’s twenty to nine). Oh, and I’ve done some ironing since it’s Lunch Club day and I fit one of my tops better and wanted to wear it. I’ve done all my meditations and card readings. (Update at time of posting – I’ve finished Gabby’s story with a final word count of 7990 words.)

I feel a level of freedom right now.

That’s not to say that FOMO isn’t sitting there squealing for attention. That we’re not wanting to come and see what is going on with everyone and everything. But today we’re not going to. Sorry, FOMO, I’m being a big kid now. I’m doing the work I need to do. I am focusing inward.

I’ll turn Wi-Fi on again to post this a bit later in the morning but until then, I am unplugged and I’m focusing on my journey and I am going to get things done.


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