Presence

Presence.

Being present.

Captivation.

Being in the moment.

These are the thoughts that have been swirling around my brain all day today. And, as it turns out, some of my favorite blog friends had similar thoughts as mine…including Lindsay, Heather, Tina and Nicole. Unreal how that happens sometimes, huh?

I’ve been battling to find the right balance… I know, I’ll get there. Having the ability to work from home once per week will make a world of a difference. Once the weather turns, my commute should get slightly less hellacious more bearable.

But there’s something else that’s been nagging at the back of my mind.

Being present.

I have a problem being too connected all the time.

Too tethered to my blackberry (both of them).

Active on twitter, chatty on Facebook and even getting into Foursquare, too (because why not add *another* social network to the mix, right?).

I spend 9+ hours a day on my laptop at work. Only to come home and re-connect to check in on my blog friends, update my Facebook status or check my email.

Where is the presence in that?

Sure – there’s a time and a place to be connected. I love my blog friends and this community we share. It’s great for support. It’s a damn good source of inspiration. And a place where I’ve “met” some amazing friends. I wouldn’t give that up for the world.

Or would I?

I actually wondered to myself tonight if I should end my blog.

I feared, for a split second, that by pulling back from my blog, from social networking fun, that I’d fail. I’m sort of an “all or nothing” kinda girl so for me, “pulling back” isn’t something I’m very good at. I either go big or go home.

But I’m not going to give up this blog. I love it too much. I’m proud of it. It’s mine to do with it what I want. It’s a creative outlet as much as it is a way to share my hopes, dreams, goals and chatty rambles for whoever wants to read it.

Instead, I’m going to let go.

Let go of that “all or nothing” mentality and be present.

For my husband.

For my friends.

For my sisters.

For my niece.

For me.

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34 thoughts on “Presence

  1. I haven’t ventured into the whole 4 square thing b/c I don’t need yet another thing to do on my blackberry. I am starting to cut back on blogging and commenting doing an off and on rotation. Like you, I’m at work for 8-9hrs then come home, reconnect. I need a break and to live somewhere in there.

    Happy to see you are sticking around :)

    • I wish I didn’t! I don’t use it all that often but still…it’s just *another* thing to take away my focus on those around me. I hate to sound so negative because I do love blogging and being social, and it’s not like I’m getting major complaints from friends and family at my overt connectedness…it just really hit me today how darn connected I’ve become. And that’s just sad, really. We weren’t meant to be tethered to the Internet as much as we are!

  2. I have the same problem being present. I feel like I always need to be tuned into everything else other than where I am in the moment (except for when I am working out, that is the only time I am not thinking about my phone). I know it is possible because I do it for an hour every day — I just need to focus on taking that focused energy from exercise and expanding it to the rest of my life. It will take work.

    • Exactly. If we can do it for an hour a day, surely we can do it for MORE than an hour a day right? It’s just one of those things, those HABITS that’s just so darn hard to escape. Ignoring that flashing light on my blackberry? Well THAT may be my biggest feat to overcome, ever. But I’m determined to do it.

  3. when I read your post it just speaks so much volume! I feel as if I need to do this montly or even weekly. Thank goodness we have each other to hold each other accountable. Your blog is your expression. Thank you for always being present to us. now we must share you with others (aka your hubs). :)

    • I know…it’s almost like we need to pick a day each week to completely and utterly disconnect. As “scary” as that may sound, the world will go on. Our blog friends will still love us if we “miss” something here or there. Why is that so hard for us to wrap our heads around?? I’m SO glad I’m not the only one that finds this tough to balance sometimes. I will happily share you with your hubs, just so long as I get to spend some time with you here and there still, too. Deal?? ;-)

  4. I LOVE this. I think it’s so important to disconnect from time to time…and if it means that you don’t post every day and maybe lose a few of your readers, it’s still totally worth it. As long as it feels right for you, that’s all that matters!

    • somehow I knew you would, friend. You’re SO good at disconnecting…me, total fail on that one most of the time. You’re right, I need to do what’s right for me and nobody or nothing else. I don’t know why that’s so hard for me to do, I guess I’m more of a pleaser than I thought?

  5. This really struck a chord with me. Both because I am bad at always having my mind half on something else, no matter what I’m doing, which makes me bad at being present; and also because it’s very easy to get sucked into a black hole of blogs and forums and social networking sites, and eventually just feel overwhelmed by it all.

    Like you, I recently considered whether this was something I just had to cut the cord on. But then I realised that I can be as involved — or not — as I want. When I see people apologising because they missed a post, or are late with one, it makes me panic. The pressure! And then I remember that there is a way of being involved that is less intense. It’s why I only read and comment on (comparatively) few blogs; it makes it manageable, and also makes it feel like more of a worthwhile investment, rather than just a hit and run job. And on my part, I will post as and when I have the chance. This is supposed to be a positive endeavour and creative outlet, not something I use to put even more pressure on myself!

    It also means I can leave looooong rambling comments for those lucky few.. ;) Actually, I think a lot of that was me reassuring myself via your comments section. Sorry about that! But hopefully you at least feel a sense of empathy from all this babbling.

    ps — I passed your deets onto someone today who is injured and is going to have to completely revamp her workout routine. I gave your core fusion challenge of an example of how a completely different workout setup can end up being a really positive thing, and suggested she check you out :)

    • Wow. what an awesome comment. Like you said my post struck a chord with you? This comment struck a chord with me – especially this part: This is supposed to be a positive endeavour and creative outlet, not something I use to put even more pressure on myself!

      SO true…why do we put such pressure on ourselves as bloggers to be perfect all the time? For those true “blog friends” out there, you won’t mind if I post less or comment a wee bit less. I try so hard to write meaningful comments and not do the “hit and run” job that I see sometimes happen out there. I think it’s only worth commenting if a post struck a chord with you, otherwise, reading it, appreciating it for what it is and moving on is ok too.

      PS. SO awesome of you to pass my blog on to your friend! I hope my experience will help her see that it’s ok – and actually quite awesome – to really revamp your workout routine now and then. Wishing her lots of luck as she recovers!

  6. I try and live in the present and in the moment but I know I do worry about the future and think of the past. I’d miss your blog if you didn’t blog but you have to do what is right for you. It’s funny, sometimes I wonder how we would survive without the internet. If it wasn’t for the internet, I would never have discovered workout dvds, Cathe, gone on a Cathe workout, bought from Lululemon, Abercrombie, Victoria Secret, Amazon (probably wouldn’t need a credit card if I didn’t go online) discovered blogs, caught up with friends from the States who I worked with in summer camps years ago. I wouldn’t have learnt about clean eating and health and wellness.

    Which brings me to the Cathe road trip, if I were to go on the Glassboro road trip, what airport is nearby?

    • Totally, totally – what DID we do before the Internet? And GPS systems for that matter? Two things that I rely on way more than I ever thought possible. To “go back” seems like ancient times or something. Ha!

      Um are you seriously considering the Cathe RT in Glassboro?? How AWESOME would it be to meet you?? I’d LOVE that! My sis and I are definitey planning to sign up on Friday (1am ET sharp!) as well as blog friend Heather who I had the pleasure of meeting last year at the RT. The nearest airport is Philadelphia, it’s about a 25 min drive (they have shuttles for road trippers) to the hotel. Not far at all. Tell me if you decide to go for it!

  7. Avoiding the social media/blog vortex was difficult for me for a long time. I kept my phone attached to me, so I could check twitter and emails at a moment’s notice. I spent hours voraciously commenting on blogs and trying to return the favor to anyone who commented on mine.

    As time goes on, I post less frequently and find myself shutting my laptop off “just because.” I used to think that I needed to keep typing as long as I didn’t have something “important” to do…but sometimes a What Not To Wear marathon IS important! We all need to detach, unplug, and enjoy what’s makes us happiest.

    Balance is so difficult to achieve. I think it’s something we are all working hard to find. I wish there was a magic trick for that! Until then, it sounds like you are actively pursuing your own happiness and living life. I love that about you!

    • YES. Turning off the laptop “just because” is huge – even if, as you say, it’s “just” to watch What not to Wear. Ha! You’re right – disconnecting to do something else doesn’t mean that “something else” has to be something monumental either. It just means disconnecting from everything else and being present with whomever is around you, or just being present with yourself. Also a much-needed thing…something I only really do when I’m working out, but could definitely stand to do more of.

      Balance IS tough to achieve but I’m working on getting there…it’s so important to me, thank you for appreciating it with me!
      PS. Saw your response back to my comment on your blog, count me in for your next blogger meet-up, so fun!

  8. Girl you bring up so many great points. I was actually thinking of doing a post on Friday for the spouses/friends/family of bloggers. I had no idea how time-consuming it would be. It’s almost a love/hate thing though. I love it, I love the interaction, the comments, inspiration, friendships. But I spend soooo much time thinking about posts, commenting, replying, even eating cold meals b/c I am busy taking pictures rather than eating. TV shows? What are those? I might be sitting there on the couch with a show on, but I’m buried in the laptop mentally.

    • That’s the thing – it doesn’t HAVE to be as time-consuming as we make it. So we don’t comment as often or as quickly. So we post a little less frequently here and there. If that means taking our n ose out of our laptops at night more often, I’m all for that. I’ll still be your blog friend if you choose “being present” over “being a blogging fiend 24/7,” and you’ll still be mine, right??

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  11. PHEW!!! I am so glad you’re not giving up your blog (purely selfish). :-)

    I think our generation (and the next will be WORSE!) is horrible about staying in the present. For example, I’ve tried waiting in the line at the grocery store, or being stuck in traffic, without using my phone to get on Facebook, Twitter, or Us Weekly. ;-) It is SO hard for me. I need to learn to sllllow it down. I guess we all do! It is just so hard to go, especially when you’re a “go go go” kind of person….

    • Wow. you’re right. I’m the same way in line at the grocery store – I can’t just sit there and talk to Scott (if he’s with me in line). I have to be doing something to occupy the time. There is something SERIOUSLY wrong with that!

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