Adventures of a social media recluse.

squirrelOne of the beautiful things about not being an A-list social media blogger is that I can drop off the face of the earth, so far as this blog is concerned, for a week, and no one really complains.

Or probably more accurately in most cases, I don’t feel the urge to pretend that my massive numbers of followers were complaining bitterly about my absence, and apologize for leaving everyone bereft of my brilliance for a whole week. 😉

Last week, I was extraordinarily busy. Mostly doing work. Actual, billable, work. And starting college again.

I was also traveling, and while I aspire to be a true digital nomad, my current state of semi-organization makes me more a digital refugee when I’m on the road. I’m working on it–since the traveling thing is probably not going to go away any time soon. In point of fact, in a fairly short while I’ll be out at Las Vegas for Blog World Expo. Schmoozing with the big dog bloggers, in theory.

In actual practice, my mission is simple. Ferret out the folks who have actual experience executing solid work, and picking their brains as much as they’ll let me, while collecting a boatload of video and other content for The Social Enthusiast, the actual social media blog I write with my friend and fellow Doe-nut, David Finch (this blog being more my motley collection of thoughts about life and stories and the internet).

I won’t be visiting WOMMA, or SXSW, or any of the other marketing and web nerd conferences coming up in the next six months to a year. While WOMMA at least has a lot of relevance to the kind of work I do, I’d rather focus on executing the large amount of work that’s currently on my plate, than hitting conferences and talking about the work other people are doing or have done.

I found out recently that I apparently have garnered a reputation as aloof and (what was the word they used?… oh yeah…) reclusive. In a field that is defined by being social, you’d think being reclusive would be a bad thing. But interestingly, it’s seemed to have the opposite effect.

When everyone is oversharing and “always on,” being marginally more discreet and difficult to get hold of can make you a hot commodity, I guess. If you have something passably valuable to offer, at least.

The truth is, I’m not really aloof or reclusive. I am an introvert, but that’s not why I don’t put myself out there more either, really. At least, not in the sense that my introversion makes me want to avoid people.

Mostly, I think it’s because I’m 36, I know myself well, and I understand that I have a limited reserve of energy.  As much as I love being around people, for me, being around people is the equivalent of driving 90 mph.  It uses up the tank a lot faster than cruising along at 55.

Everyone in my industry is talking about burnout and work-life balance, but very few seem willing to scale back their activity and availability to do something about it.   It’s as if everyone thinks “If I work 24/7 now, I’ll get to some mythical point where I can dictate my own schedule and then I’ll avoid burnout/have a better balanced life.”

But I can’t help but think that all they’re really doing is training themselves to increase their tolerance for burnout-inducing schedules.  Or pushing themselves to a point where they finally break down.

Don’t get me wrong–that was one of my own pet patterns when I was younger.  I couldn’t say no, so I would keep saying yes until my body and brain literally gave out on me.  I got sick a lot for a young and relatively healthy person in my 20s,  mostly because getting sick was the only way my poor body could get me to take a break.

It’s still hard for me to say “No.”  I still have the teenage version of myself freaking out in my head, worried that everyone will think I’m a snob.  I worry more than I should about what people think.

On a last (and entirely different) note, I know I’ve been posting a lot of stuff from my spiritual life here.  It’s what’s on my mind a lot of the time, and I try to present it in a way that even if you don’t share my beliefs, you can potentially glean something useful from it.

But that said, I don’t want any one thing to overwhelm everything else here.  Part of trying to be a postmodern Renaissance woman is balance, right?  So I was considering starting up a Posterous blog to talk about just that side of things.

For those of you who read here, whatcha think?  Keep everything here, and let it get as messy as it gets, or move some of my excess spiritual ponderings elsewhere?  Drop a comment if you feel so moved. 🙂

img courtesy Smicko,  sxc

6 Comments


  1. ·

    I notice when you are gone. Well, sort of. If you were gone for a month I’d notice. You can post elsewhere, too, IF you mention here when you have something there.

    And I’d like the way you are planning to be strategic if it weren’t so convicting.

    Reply

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  3. ·

    If this is where you do your stream-of-conscious writing I would say keep it all in one place. I’m sometimes rabidly anti-organized-religion and you do a good job keeping your writings on spirituality relevant to your beliefs while being respectful of your readers. 🙂

    Reply

  4. ·

    Jon – It’s nice to be missed. And to be convicting. 🙂

    Mark – Cool. I’ve had the same thought about my occasional LOST-related posts–that maybe I should find a more appropriate outlet for them. But since DarkUFO isn’t knocking down my door begging for me to join his crack team of recappers… 😉

    Charles – THAT was a remarkably helpful comment. I (try to) walk a tight line between being authentic about the relatively large role faith plays in my life, and being respectful that it’s a difficult topic for some. Good to know that at least one person thinks I’m doin’ it right. 🙂

    Reply

  5. ·

    I just wanted to say I like your blog! I was goofing off on Google when I found your site. After spending some time on your site I’ve come up with some ideas for a new site. I just thought I’d let you in on it

    Reply

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