Re-Harvesting Attention

A life without social media means more time for polishing one's fingernails.
Painting by Elena Samokysh-Sudkovskaya, 1908

A few times today, I have caught myself reflexively checking Facebook and Twitter.

This didn't happen in previous years. I think that I was far more aware that I had unplugged. So the absence of social media was more in the forefront of my mind.

This time, though, it felt like a routine. Unplugging is what I do at Lent. So the novelty has faded.

Truth be told, this year, I had contemplated just scaling back on social media--giving myself specified times when I could log on.

Or maybe I would just try something new--an exercise routine, or something dietary. It's been a while since I gave up chocolate for Lent.

But as Ash Wednesday drew near, I noticed that other friends were planning to unplug.

What the heck. Here goes Year Four of the Social Media Fast!

The fact that I have tried to open my social media accounts today tells me that I made a good decision.

A very good decision.

I obviously needed a reset. But I also needed a reminder about what matters to me. The intent of social media is to literally "harvest" my attention.

Now, I have re-harvested my attention. 

What can I do with it?

For one thing, I hope to renew some of my human connections, my friendships. It's easy to let those slide.

But maintaining friendships takes work. So the plan is to do more phone calls and visits, and to have conversations about important and unimportant things.

The substance matters less than the intention.

Here's hoping to a positive harvest of friendships.