Monday, October 17, 2011

Minimalist Monday: Reducing Online Time

I love the Internet.  It's one of the best things, I believe, that has ever been created.  You can learn just about anything on the world wide web.  Everything I know about being green, being frugal, and living a more simple life has been from reading articles, books, blogs, interviews, and news - all online.  We have learned about some of our family's illnesses from webmd.  My hubby has repaired, replaced, (re)DIY-ed so many things in our home and with our cars just from researching various websites.  I have downloaded coloring pages, craft ideas, songs, movies, and so many games for the kiddos.  And with a newborn in the house again, I am (re)learning the 411 on nursing, cloth diapering, and everything else that I can expect the first year.  The Internet is definitely something that I sadly can admit that I can't live without.

BUT, one thing that I know I can live without is being online too much.  An important lesson that I have learned about this great development is that you can easily find yourself in front of a computer screen for hours and hours on end.  If you get hungry, you can go fix yourself a sandwich and munch on it in front of the monitor.  If you need to go potty, run errands, or cook, there's a smart phone for that.  If you need to go to sleep - well - some people don't.  If you really wanted to, you can be on the Internet for almost a whole day without taking your eyes off your computer.  I can say that I don't do that.  But, I am on the computer quite a bit during the course of a 24-hour time period.  And I have quickly seen the consequences of that since I started these weekly blogs.

Even though my 12-week-old son slept like a log for almost 10 hours straight last night, I woke up feeling overwhelmed and agitated.  I felt rested, but as I looked around my untidy bedroom, I realized how unhappy I was feeling about the home we are living in.  I spend a good amount of time every week cleaning our house, and no matter how much I try to keep it organized, not a day goes by that it doesn't become cluttered almost immediately.  Of course, that all comes from having too much stuff - a problem that I am constantly battling with and working on fixing.  And as I have said before, when you have too much stuff, you spend too much time cleaning, gathering, mending, etc.  And when you spend most of your time doing that, you hardly have any time left for the really important things in life.

I don't know how all the other bloggers do it.  Every day, I receive emails with new blog posts from the same people, and I think to myself, "How the heck do they do that?  How do they find the time to come up with different articles every day?  How do they have time for anything else?"  I don't know.  But I know that I definitely don't have the time or the strength to do that at this present moment.  With two active young children to home school and a newborn to bond with, I realize that my being online to write up different posts every week, along with hosting reviews and giveaways, is not nearly as important as spending time with my family.

With that said, I have decided to reduce and schedule my weekly postings to "whenever I have the chance."  I will still be adding reviews and giveaways, but I just don't have the energy right now to do any more than that.  I applaud all of the bloggers who continue to do such great work every week, and I envy your time management skills, for I know I definitely do not have that mastered (yet).  I love receiving emails from all of you, and I enjoy posting information that has helped me and I know will continue to help me.  As I learn to better simplify my life so that in the future I may be able to post more without waking up overwhelmed, I hope I to pay it forward and share the same tips and suggestions with you, regardless if you blog or not.  Am I disappointed that I am not continuing these weekly posts like I set out to do only a few weeks ago?  Yes, of course.  Am I embarrassed that I can't be as great as these other bloggers who can do everything, including be a wonderful parent and spouse?  Nope.  If anything, I'm proud that I can admit where I'm weak and know that I need help in those departments.  Do I feel like a failure because of this decision?  Honestly?  A little bit.  I'm a bit of an overachiever, and when I don't accomplish my goals, I have a tendency to feel like I not only let myself down, but also those who care and support me.  So what does this mean then?  I'm taking one step back from spending my life online to take many steps forward in carrying out what my blog and mission is all about:  living green, frugal, and simple.  Not being on the computer as long as I normally do on a daily basis saves electricity, money, and time.  I couldn't be happier knowing that this is the best decision for me, for my family, and for the future of The Green House.  Thank you for your understanding and continued support.  Mahalo nui loa!

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