Lately I've been thinking about how much time I really spend online. I'm sure if I were to calculate it in a day, or week, I'd be appalled! Especially when considering all the things I could've accomplished with that time, like my family history, ironing my hubby's shirts or helping the little miss learn her colors.
I've found some "inspirational-to-me" blogs, forums lately (which is a blessing and a curse - great reads, but then again comes the whole time issue and how much of it I waste on the Internet). But they really have made me think about this more and make some goals for myself.
I go through periods, or I have in the past, where it seems I'm online more often than not. For instance, I've had Facebook for about four years now. I was on and off it for the first bit, actually thought about closing my account for awhile so I wouldn't be so distracted from studies, kept it but got on only once in a blue moon, and now I find myself on there multiple times a day! It's like I can't wait to read the next little update or see the latest pictures. Social networking - can be such a fun way to stay in touch with family and friends, to connect with people, but it is also one of the biggest time-wasters in my life!
And then there's blogging. I love blogging. I love having my blog, where I can record little happenings and memories and have a place to open my mind and just write (like I'm doing now). And though I do post fairly often, I don't think that my blog is my problem. It's reading others' blogs that really gets me. I've become quite the fan of Google Reader, and though it's nice to have updates, almost instantly, to every blog I want (except those private ones) all in one place, is it really necessary? I mean, I sit and read and read and read about others' lives and get inspired, but at the end of the day, I'm still just the one sitting behind a computer.
I don't want my children to think of their mom with a computer screen in her face when they think about their childhood years. I want to be more involved and active, and that doesn't mean I have to spend every single second catering to their every need and want, but I can show them I'm a more involved and active mom by the things I do for myself too - like learning new skills, getting new hobbies, the pride I get from keeping an orderly home, the time I spend in preparing healthy meals every night for my family, and from the stuff I do for their dad - like ironing his shirts, making him lunches, calling him in the middle of the day to say how much I care, supporting him and encouraging him . . . the list could go on and on.
I came across this article, Moms Unplugged, one day this week and thought about how true it is in my life. I try to limit my time on the computer during the day when Avie is awake, but I still find myself on there, for a minute here or there, all too often. I've noticed that the mornings our beloved iMac is turned off from the night before are so much more productive than when not. Maybe I just need to do that every night.
I like the ideas that are suggested in the above-mentioned article. I've made a few goals of my own, and no, I'm not going to list them, but they will be there, in my mind, in my notes and for me to remember. I'm resolving right now to be better and to not let this "addiction," if you will (yeah, it's that serious to me), get to me anymore. And yeah, it's probably going to take some time until I've balanced it out just right and have learned what praiseworthy (see no. 13) things to feel my time up with, but it is something I want to change.
This winter is going to be a challenge for me. Not being able to go outside nearly as often with Avie, it will be really easy to want to just dawdle my days away surfing the Web, but I'm not going to let myself. This doesn't mean that I won't ever blog anymore or get on Facebook again, but I'm going to learn how to balance my time with these things and enjoy the blessing of them more instead of the curse.
How do you find balance in your life?
This was originally posted on my personal blog on 12.11.2009.