One year ago today, Henibean was born.... it all started with my Hello post. At that time I had a goal to reach 100 blog posts in a year and I am happy to report that goal was accomplished on Friday last week... so today, on Henibean's first blog birthday, it's just the cherry on the cake with post 101!
Apart from the plan of the number of posts I wanted to achieve.... I started out blogging with only the idea to try to give a little encouragement to those who are on a similar journey to me. I hoped to instill a little confidence and courage... and encourage small simple baby steps that anyone can do to improve life balance and become more healthy and creative.The posts have varied from Heni's story's, Book reviews, Restaurant reviews, Walking with wheelchair posts , Making memories and traditions ideas , health topics together with some Sanity space projects and the occasional rant.
When I started out I had no idea if anyone would read the blog... but over the year I have been privileged to get to know many wonderful people from all over the world. I had no idea where the adventure would lead... but I am grateful to say that I am still here one year later having learned far more along the way. Recently I have enjoyed looking back on some of the experiences and adventure and reflecting upon them and two things stood out.
I think with anything in life you have to be consistent and do the small and simple things within your power... those two principles have helped me stick with it and reach my goal.
Many small and simple habits are positive and good and can help us move forwards in a positive way but there are also some small and simple habits that we can take for granted and that can lead to poor consequences.
I love listening to podcasts, and just recently I heard one of them made by a friend of the family called Tony Litster. He begins the cast by reviewing an experiment he tried at a family gathering. He decided to keep count of how many times he had an impulse to look at his phone and was surprised to find out that the urge came once every 4 minutes! A small and simple habit....... one of which I'm sure we can all relate to. He continues on to talk about phone and technology addictions and also some of the more devastating addictions that can lead to far worse consequences.
I also remembered An article from a practitioner newsletter I receive a while back...it was called "Are you digitally toxic?" by Louise Joyce ND. In her opinion, mobile phone addiction is perhaps "the new antisocial behaviour that smoking is or once was" (you can read her full article here).
How much of a problems is our technology really becoming? Do we ever have any time where we leave our phones at home? Does it interrupt our conversations with real people? Do we check our emails numerous times every day? Are we constantly checking social media and status updates? Phones are just one issue.... any screen time can have the same effect whether it be a computer screen, iPad, TV etc.
Lets get this straight... technology is important....there have been multiple times I have been out and had a phone call, after which I have had to drop everything to go to deal with a Heni health crisis (when she has taken a dive for the worse)...It's at these times that I am truly grateful to have such electronics. However I find that I have become more fearful of missing any important calls like this regarding Heni and so always have it by my side. The downside to this is that I've also noticed the gradual creep of urges (like Tony) to just check a status update or scroll through Instagram pics while I am in a "lull" moment. A pattern I am not entirely happy with nor should be.... and that needs some changing. The article encourages us all to take a moment to calculate our digital footprint and set goals for improving it. One quote I particularly liked was the thought that :-
"We are better than our devices so why not choose more mindfully how we use them, not how they use us."
What does this have to do with Henibean? What now? What's next?
Well, I have taken Tony and Louise's advise and reassessed my digital time. I'm heading off to the lake district for our yearly family trip soon, so it's a great opportunity to take a digital detox. I'll still have my phone and computer with me ....there may be the odd evening we spend time on Netflix for a family movie while we are gone, and I am definitely going to be taking lots of pictures on my iPhone...
....but as for me checking my blog stats, building my twitter account and Instagram followers and looking at whats happening on Facebook... I will be leaving all that till I get back home. I'll still answer calls and emails... but at a defined allotted time every day. I am choosing more mindfully how to use my technology!
I'll be taking a good old notebook and pen with me and making sure I still write some blog post ...oh and perhaps a good book to report on for an upcoming book review.
I will be back in full swing here on Henibean on the 15th April, so you can log back on and expect a post then. In the meantime I would encourage you to listen to Tony's podcast (be prepared for the raw truth) and read Louis's article... and then go make your own mind up how you are going to re-jig your digital lives.
I look forward to catching up with everyone when I'm back and telling you all about it.
In the mean time If you want to celebrate my birthday with me I would appreciate it if you were to follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest, leave some comments and share any posts that you have enjoyed over the last year ....BUT.... do make sure its all in your newly defined digital time of course!