Tag Archives: Plaid Fuzz

5 Things I Learned While Going 7 Days Without Facebook

Still wide awake at 12:30 a.m. today, I rolled out of bed and did what I’ve done on many other sleepless nights. I grabbed my phone to check in with Facebook — for the first time in 7 days.

A week ago, inspired by a book I’m reading and challenged by my blogging friend Plaidfuzz, I decided to give myself a one week break from Facebook. Besides wanting to change a habit, a big motivation for my self-imposed fast was the climate on Facebook. Don’t get me wrong. There is much that’s good in this online community — inspiring messages, fun recipes, photos of friends and their families, groups of like-minded individuals conversing on topics of interest (writing and hygge). And, Facebook is sometimes a window into the world of my sons, though it’s not often their chosen means of communicating online.

But what I found when dropping in during the middle of the night is that not much has changed in seven days. Attacks and “false news” are still popping up in my news feed, which means I have to do a lot of scrolling to get to stuff I want to read, and, the things I don’t want to pour into my mind still seep in.

I have enjoyed at least 168 hours without the vitriol, and I feel cleansed.

Stepping away  from Facebook — even for just a week — gave me some perspective and taught me a thing or two. Or 5. Here are 5 things I learned during my 7-day break from Facebook:

  1. My friends are still my friends whether I “like” something they say or not. Not one of them unfriended me because of my neglect. Nor did they send me nasty messages.
  2. Picking up my Bible first thing in the morning instead of my phone or I-pad is better for my spiritual, emotional and mental health. I started most days happier, calmer and with a clearer mind. I’ve been reading the book of Jeremiah first thing in the morning, with Eugene Peterson’s great book “Run with the Horses” as my guide. The destruction of Jerusalem and the angry greed of Babylon aren’t so far removed from our world today. (Adding praises from Psalms tempers the message.)
  3. There’s a lot more to read, watch and listen to on the Internet besides what’s in my Facebook feed. Notable sites where I spent time this week included The Redbud Post, The Academy of Ideas, and Jeff Goins’ podcast The Portfolio Life .
  4. My political views didn’t waver in the absence of daily reminders of how divided our country has become. I’m still conservative, right of center, pro-life and praying for our nation.
  5. I can accomplish a lot in the 10 minutes I might spend several times a day scrolling thru, liking (or loving, crying, laughing) and commenting on Facebook posts. Some of my 10-minute fillers were folding a load of laundry, reading a chapter in a book, stirring up a batch of chocolate chip cookies, doing my yoga stretches, having a real conversation with a friend.
  6. I said 5? Here’s a bonus. Twitter is a poor substitute, and it is just as mind-numbing and time-wasting as Facebook. Instagram? Not ready to give that up yet.

Will I return to Facebook permanently? Possibly. I’ve made some great connections and found new friends there. But if I do, I think I’ll rely on it less often to fill spare moments and to connect with people.

My final three words on Facebook? Words I try to apply to everyday life: Discretion, Self-control, Balance.

Exercising My Creativity with a Bullet Journal (and Getting Organized in the Process)

When a girl with a lifelong passion for pen and paper collides with a fun and practical way to use said pen and paper, a new hobby is born.

A week into it, and I can see that keeping a Bullet Journal (BuJo to the growing number of enthusiasts) will become more than a hobby. If I use it right, it could be a major tool in my quest to live more intentionally.

The Bullet Journal concept has been around for a few years. Developed and promoted by entrepreneur Ryder Carroll, the standard BuJo is simply a small notebook, such as a Moleskine, with dotted graph pages rather than lines. The pages are set up with monthly and daily plans and logs, along with lists. The idea is to contain all our many notes, lists and planners in one convenient location.

Ryder’s BuJo looks like something a guy would design and use.  Practical, but a little boring.

bujo1

Enter the female version of BuJo (this one by blogger Boho Berry).

bujo2

I discovered the BuJo through my online friend Plaid Fuzz, a blogger from South Dakota who is a fellow planner fanatic. She pointed me to BoHo Berry. I caught their excitement and was inspired by their journals. After a little research, I decided it might be the tool for me.

It turns out I’m not alone. There are online communities and Facebook walls where thousands of BuJo fans share ideas, prompts and new products.

I love color, so my BuJo will have colorful accents throughout. I’m also adding inspirational quotes, scripture and art. The best aspects of planning and journaling by this method are that it is flexible and personal. In the pages where I’m planning and journaling for January, I’m inserting lists and goals that can be referenced or repeated throughout the year — whatever I decide I need as the year unfolds. The format of my planner/journal pages also can change if what I’ve designed at the beginning isn’t working for me in, say, June.

Of course, to get the greatest benefit from my BuJo, I’ll have to actually USE it — to record plans and thoughts, as well as to track progress on things like reading, writing, and developing healthy lifestyle habits.

I’ve purposed to live more intentionally in the past, but never had a tool to hold me accountable and to visualize my progress. I think the BuJo just might work for me.

Besides, it’s fun!

Here’s a tour of my very first BuJo.

bujocover

This is a Leuchtturm1917 (ordered on Amazon) in lovely orange! I’m still settling on which pens work best, but I love the vivid color of the Pilot G2. I’m also using colored pencils.

bujoflub

Highlighting my “life verse” seemed to be the perfect way to begin the year. The picture on the right is covering a major “flub”, but I really love it. Snatched from an old day journal I couldn’t bear to discard and secured with decorative tape.

bujoannual

Goals for the year and an annual calendar. “Allow It” are my words for the year (more on that in a future blog).

bujolist

A couple of lists (also called collections) will replace the many lists I make and lose almost every week! Again, part of my quest to become more intentional.

bujodaily

I’ve created a 3-month planning calendar, followed by this daily journal. I think next month I’ll insert a monthly calendar between the two. We’ll see. The “dailies” will also evolve, I think.

bujovoskamp

Because I follow and appreciate the blogger/author Ann Voskamp, I’m inserting a couple of her downloadable graphics for inspiration and beauty. I’ll keep my “gratitude log” in my BuJo and I’m working on things I “purpose” to do in 2016. You can find her lovely free illustrations @aholyexperience.com

So, there you have it. I’m also tracking some healthy habits, giving myself a space to “brain dump” and at the end of the month I expect to journal the highlights of the month, as well as plans for February. I realize that as I’m posting photos from my BuJo, I’m also letting you into my personal world a little bit. I know you’ll treat me with kindness and respect.