I gaze around my apartment. Beautiful books are just waiting to be read—I’m looking at you, Warrior Goddess Training.
That’s not the only thing that sits untouched:
A sewing machine is gathering dust with the makings for amazing prayer flags I intend to gift. Empty roller ball tubes are ready to be filled with the most delicious essential oils blends. Blank canvases are begging to be covered in vibrant paint and vintage buttons. My shiny harmonica is lonely on the counter, the blues tunes I swear I will learn echoing in my head, but not in my living room. Lastly, there’s a mandala adult coloring book, and 50 perfectly pointed colored pencils, with not one line filled in.
Why have I invested in all of these great things that are sure to make me a more interesting person? All of these meant to soothe my mind and feed my soul, only to look at them and never pick them up or finish them? What have I been doing with my free time instead?
Enter: The Mindless Internet Time-Suck
I scroll endlessly through Facebook. Compulsively refreshing the page to read the latest posts from my 1,060 “friends.” Creeping on ex-lovers. Browsing the latest baby pictures. Sharing inspirational messages. Back to the newsfeed to hit refresh one more time. You know, just in case.
When that has lost its appeal, I head on over to Pinterest. Delicious recipes I eagerly pin to “Food.” The “best booty exercise” I swear I will do tomorrow after work, and those killer boots I better think about buying tonight before they’re gone in my size.
Sprinkle in a little Instagram action, a couple hours of Netflix, and a quick check back to Facebook to catch up on the latest, and it’s 11:00 p.m. The baby didn’t get fed, the dog didn’t get walked, and supper is not on the table. I don’t really have a baby or a dog, but you get my drift.
Why is it so much easier to waste an entire evening on our phones, our tablets, or our computers (I’m guilty of sometimes using all three at the same time) than to partake in an activity that is tangible? That sparks brain activity? Something that may allow you a lead-in to a conversation with, “The other night while I was painting the next Mona Lisa while practicing my harmonica…” rather than, “Did you see on Facebook…”?
Our society has become obsessed with social media, internet television, and dreaming of a better life from the comfort of the couch. We’re addicted to living behind the screen, and experiencing life vicariously through pictures and quotes and the promise that you’re going to be as great as all of those things. Tomorrow.
I am guilty of it, and I want it to stop.
I want to stop intending to do, and start doing. I want to stop buying all the makings of a beautiful experience, and jump in head-first the moment I get back from the store. I am done pushing off learning something new, and want to start creating something soul-altering. The time is now, life keeps ticking, and I don’t want to waste another second of it.
What do you think? Could you stop seeing, and start doing? I challenge you to shut down the browser, and pick up a book, or a paint brush, or whatever it is that you’ve been intending to do, and start doing.
Feed your mind, fill your soul. Do it today.
Author: Leah Wallin
Apprentice Editor: Mercedes Trujillo / Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Jay Wennington/Unsplash