No Twitter – Day 14

toes

Well, this is it. Last day. I’m looking forward to talking to a bunch of people and catching up on stuff… but at the same time I’m not exactly looking forward to Twitter itself. Plus I know it is generally bad form to favorite/retweet a bunch of stuff from the last two weeks all at once. It just feels creepy when someone does it to you especially if you don’t know them. So I have to keep that in mind and be careful how much backtracking I do. I also know I need to find some kind of program rather than looking at the website directly so I can use lists to limit what I’m looking at and that’s not the sort of thing I’m likely to be able to figure out first thing in the morning before work. I’m going to try to ease myself back into the flow a little at a time rather than plunging waist-deep in the surf, so don’t be surprised if you don’t see me on Twitter right away.

So what have I learned? Well, I’d say the biggest thing I’ve learned is that I like blogging again. I stopped doing it when it started feeling like a chore and I’m sure that will happen again, but for now I’d like to keep up a daily or near-daily habit and not lock myself into “important” entries. The easier it is for me to rattle one off the more useful it is to me overall. It’s also been a personal indication that it has taken me this long to recover from a depression relapse I had mid 2012. Man, that’s pretty unsettling. 2+ years to recover from what didn’t feel like anywhere near the bottom. Ugh, that’s a really good reason to be proactive about my overall health and not get complacent because I’m doing good right now. I’m still resentful as hell that I have to be, and I’m sure I’ll screw something up along the way, but I probably needed the reminder.

I also learned that it isn’t Twitter sucking away all my writing time. I don’t really have more or less time than I did before. My mind is clearer and I am more aware of when I engage in tasks to mentally distract myself away from “work”, but I didn’t really get more done. Being away from Twitter didn’t make me more likely to sit my ass down and write words, it just changed how I spent the time when I wasn’t. I still need to schedule writing time and enforce it. The mental discipline to do this isn’t being “used up” anywhere, I just don’t do it. I also have a lot of other responsibilities that require my time and that’s OK.

At about Day 10 stuff shifted. Less people were reaching out to me, and I needed less social interaction. I’m not sure why. It seems kind of interesting, but I don’t really have enough information to poke at it further. Might be worth looking into related research. Could be interesting to explore in a space travel story or something.

I am generally happier than I would have said prior to my break. Before this, I’d have said that the ratio of positive to negative information generally balanced out, but now I’m not so sure. I’m also more aware that a lot of retweeting of negative events seems to be triggered by a wish to alleviate the retweeter’s own suffering at reading the information themselves and thus passing it on alleviates some of their own feelings of helplessness because propagating the information is at least “doing” something.  I’m also aware that doing so can and does actually cause change in some situations… there’s just a lot of guilt and helplessness wrapped up in retweeting of negative events. Not sure what if anything I will do with this realization.

I’m really glad I did this. I don’t know if it will change how and why I do things, but it was exactly what I needed to do at this point in time.