31 Days of Introspection: Week 2: Social Media Hiatus

 

Answer my question in the comments to help me decide! 

 

Heya,

This Second week of 31 Days of Introspection has been so up and down. Great things and also crappy things. A destruction of my computer, my realization that I have  no real close friends, the joy of seeing Naomi grow and the upset at books being destroyed.

I do feel like I’ve made a ton of progress emotionally. The apartment is much better now as well. I’ve donated over 1,200 books and gotten rid of so much clutter. The sad thing is that I got the dates mixed up and I put everything out on the curb too early. I used a donation pick up service and we woke up the next day to find everything still there. It had rained the night before and all of the books that we’d set out were damaged. So the whole “they’re going to a good place” ideal is gone. My precious books didn’t go to a nice place. They won’t be enjoyed by some happy family. I didn’t do a “good deed” because all the books I’d collected over the years, and gazed at on my shelves, went to the trash.

So yeah. But at least my place has less stuff. Unfortunately, having less doesn’t fix my “messiness” and I’m struggling to keep things straightened. I know some people say you’ve got to clean as you go. I try so hard, but what ends up happening is I work work work, then I take a break, then work work work, and things get messier and messier. Then I am overwhelmed at that point and I don’t want to clean. Anyhow, I’m trying to get better and some days everything is together and some days it’s like today: work shop things everywhere.

So one of the crappy things that happened this week is the destruction of my MAC. I was holding Naomi and trying to feed her. Was sitting at the table and doing the whole breast milk from the refill bottle into empty drinking bottle and Naomi, happily and with a highpitched squeal, kicked out. The refilled bottle spilled on the Mac and the rest is history. That was a few days ago. No more YouTube videos, no more recordings for audio books, no more…no more a lot of things. I actually had to remove the “Lined” option for my journals for a day until I could create a new template using my IPad. Ugh, this is all just horrible.

So, apparently, it’s not worth it to fix my computer. I took it to the Mac store. They looked at it and they said it would cost $700 in order to fix it. In order for me to get a new one, or a Mac Book Air it would cost me $1100. That’s bullshit! How is it that expensive? That’s just crazy. I digress. I’m going to have to do everything I can to use my iPad for everything: university work, the business dealings, watching TV and anything else. I’ve never had to use it for all that stuff before so I honestly don’t know what all it can do. I’m just sad about it all.

ANOTHER great thing…NAOMI CAN CRAWL!!! OR at least…throw herself forward. It’s absolutely amazing to see her growing and progressing right before my eyes. She’s so beautiful, so luminous. Sometimes I just watch her, trying to discover things, trying to put things in her mouth, ew, and just…living. It’s all so amazing.

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So, in the beginning of this month I decided to take a social media hiatus. Last week’s summary was about how low my Twitch (the amount of times I itch to get on social media) was. This week you’ll be disappointed to find that I broke my hiatus. At first, I was upset about Google and their mandatory security practices, and needed to vent and I, admittedly, felt annoyed at myself that I broke my promise to myself. Then I thought “hmmm, well I’ve already broken my promise. I might as well go ahead and go all in”. Bad idea. I know. What I discovered is that no one cared. Cares. No one missed me. No one wanted to talk to me or wanted to reach out. No one remembered me or thought of me, that I could tell. In the spirit of honesty, because that’s what this month is all about, that’s one of my greatest fears. Being forgotten. Not being important. It stems from my deeply rooted issues with my childhood abandonment- fostercare, child abuse, and all that jazz.

So, when I noticed that most of my notifications were those “____ people commented on a photo/post you are following” I broke down. Not literally, there were no tears or complaining to my guy. NO posts filled with shade, “wondering” where everyone was. There was just silence. I felt numb. Resolved. This was a part of the reason I knew I needed to take a step back from social media. Other people shouldn’t be responsible for whether I feel important enough. Guess that’s the issue with replacing a true human connection with an artificial and electronic one. It kind of reminds me of the months after my daughter Iris Giana died. I was so alone, even my mom didn’t care, didnt call or reach out to me, even though I almost died. It was…distressing.

That being said, I  know what I’ll do at the end of the day. I’m resetting everything. I’m possibly making a my business FAcebook. I’m going to keep my Instagram and Twitter but I’ll limit my usage of them to over just a few hours a day. I’m letting the past go. The funny thing is that unless people read this post (is anyone really?) no one will know. I’ll just slip away. uGH. I wonder why this makes me want to take a deep breath and meditate.

So, was breaking my social media hiatus in a rushed need for my druglike fix worth it? Yes…and no. Yes, and no. But mostly yes, because I learned things.

 

So I’m thinking about becoming a pescatarian- with the exception of bacon, of course. I’m really wanting to try new things. I’m just bored with the same hubbub. The only thing is that fish is soooo much more expensive than chicken, beef, or turkey. Do you know any good pescatarian dishes? have you ever tried this lifestyle? Let me know your thoughts in the comments.

This week I downloaded a business app that will train me in skills every small business owner needs. It’s called Primer and it has great examples and animations so that anyone can learn. I just finished 2 lessons on branding and plan to do the marketing and advertisement lessons next.

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One of the awesome things I did this week is watch a ton of videos on product photography. I then went down to Lake Eola and took over 140 photos. Then,  because my computer is down, I had to take a trip to the library to upload everything. It worked out, if only because Naomi loves books, and I will be making changes to my shop as soon as I can. One of the best things in my entire apartment…my DSLR.

I’m also adding these new mini notebook sets to my shop. I’m really excited about it all. I feel like this will all work out. Everything will be ok. Be…just fine.

 

Happy Readdance,

Jade

31 Days of Introspection: Week 1: Meditation

Heya,

One of the greatest things I’ve realized that happens when you take a hiatus from social media is having more time for the things that you love. Mainly, Naomi.  I freaking love this little baby but I’m often doing school work when I am home, and my guy’s at work. I didn’t realize just how much time I spend on my phone until I stopped using it as much. When I wasn’t studying, I was crawling around on the floor with her, playing and reading books. I was able to get more bonding time with her while feeding because, instead of being on my phone scrolling through the latest Twitter feed, I’m gazing into her eyes.

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One thing that I have been doing since I started the 31 Days of Introspection is counting the Twitch. I’m not exactly sure who came up with this because I was watching dozens of videos on youtube at the time that I heard it, but the Twitch is that moment when you have an itch to reach for your phone. Most times, I want to whip my phone out and look at it during the slow points of my day. When you’re on the toilet, cooking, watching tv, in between browsing loads when doing homework, etc. I didn’t realize just how much it filled my time until I started counting it.

Th first day it was hard. As soon as the clock stroke midnight, I felt the Twitch. I wanted to post about it. I’ve been keeping track of them in my The Elyzabeth Collection journal and, because I’m using the grid pattern, I filled three lines of boxes. As the days of the week went on, I realized the Twitch became less and less often. By the 6th day, which I spent in a hotel with my guy (thanks to his mom being in town and watching Naomi to giving us a break), I only counted 3 Twitches! How crazy is that? I went from at least 20 by midday to 3. It just reaffirmed that I’m taking this Introspection month seriously.

Another thing that I really wanted to do for this month is meditate. I decided to first focus on my confidence and self-esteem. I’m not down on myself but I definitely feel that I could believe in myself more. Especially when it comes to starting my business, writing books, taking great photos, and my ability to share my creations with the world. After I meditate, using Headspace, I’m calm and relaxed. I’m able to truly think about the future, who and what I want to be. I write in my journal at that point. But at first, I wanted to dive right in, do 30 minute sessions but I’m glad that I decided to go with the free trial for Headspace. The sessions are only 3 minutes long and it’s helped me be consistent and get excited to do it. I’ve also been approved for the Student account- which is only $9 a year versus $99. I’ll definitely take them up on that offer after the trial period is over.

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I’m happy to say my hair looks fucking fantastic! I started dread locs on November 16th because I was already getting a bit lazy with my hair and I wanted to try something new that was low maintenance. My guy has been pushing me to do it for the last 5 years and I’ve finally given in. Yes, he’s excited. I’ll admit that I am as well. I feel…beautiful. Fucking beautiful. I started them with two strand twists but my hair is fine and thick and they quickly slipped out of the twist, as usual. I bought an interlocking tool and it’s made things so easy. What do you guys think?

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Another thing that I’ve decided to do is hand pour my coffee. It’s perfect timing because we literally just ran out of pods. I hadn’t known much about this before I became obsessed with Matt D’Avella‘s videos on Youtube. He has a channel that is inspirational, heavily talks about minimalism and productivity. He’s also the film maker behind the documentary Minimalism. It’s absolutely fantastic. I almost cried watching the movie and I truly believe his videos have changed my life. I am ready to take on minimalism, although it is hard to let go of my sentimental items, and look forward to this journey. I’ve already gotten rid of more than one thousand books. Anyone who knows me knows that is heart-wrenching. But it was needed.

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Speaking of books, I requested some from the library that I hope will help me on this journey to Minimalism. I’m so happy that our library system delivers! It’s one of the best things I’ve ever experienced snce moving to Florida.
These are the ones I’ve chosen:
Everything That Remains by The Minimalist (Ryan Nicodemus and Joshua Fields Milburn- from the documentary Minimalism)
The Minimalist Home by Joshua Becker
Meditation for Fidgety Skeptics by Dan Harris
The Cozy Minimalist Home by Myquillyn Smith

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I set a goal to achieve this week. I wanted to do something regarding my business. Whether that’s to create a logo, a website, take product photos (etc). Every week has something. I started with a bang! I’ve created a website for my small business! The journals I sell are a part of The Elyzabeth Collection, check out the new site and tell me what you think!

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Lastly, I’m still working on the actual ‘Minimalism’ part of this month. I didn’t realize that when I started getting things together everything would first fall apart. My apartment looks wrecked! Books, papers, boxes, and random miscellaneous items are everywhere. I’ve been attempting to use the KonMari method (Marie Kondo) and, although I’ve gone through the clothes and papers sections, I’m still not done. I keep going back to look at sections I’ve already done to declutter even more. I think that by the end of the month I will have even LEEEESSSSSS and I’ll still feel like there’s much to get rid of. It’s going to feel so good to have a safe place for Naomi to crawl and play.

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Thank you for reading this summary of the first week of 31 Days of Introspection. I want to be a new person in 2020. A Better me. I definitely feel that I am taking the steps, to do that, in the right direction.

Creating The Elyzabeth Collection

Hey ya’ll!

How’s your week been? I’ve been wanting to share this with you for some time but I couldn’t find the right words. I’m on this deep journey to understanding myself and feeling proud of the things that I create and this is one of mine passions. I know that you guys are aware (whether through my Twitter, Instagram, Youtube Channel or any other social media that I’ve posted them on) that I have an Etsy shop where I sell handmade, custom journals. I started creating these journals last year before I got pregnant with Naomi and I was on the fence about doing it. I was afraid to fail, afraid that no one would want to buy a journal, afraid that I couldn’t make a good product. Then we found out we were having a baby.

I allowed this to be used as my excuse to not make journals or start the business. “I don’t have enough time” (back then I was working, on pregnancy bedrest because I was high risk, and a full time student) and therefore I needed to wait. I said, “How can I start something new when there’s so much going on?” I don’t know how many reasons I gave to not start it but, to be honest, I knew what was really going on.

 

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I’ve always had this issue with appearance. No, not physical appearance (you guys can clearly tell that I’m not the best in the fashion department nor do I try to be). I want to appear to have it together. I want to feel proud of myself and, sadly, I’ve always wanted others to be proud of me (yes, that’s also something I’m dealing with during this month of Introspection). But then something silly happened.

 

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This summer, I had the sudden urge to write in a new journal despite having several unfinished ones at home that I’ve bought over the years. You know writers, this is our thing. Our JAM! I browsed online and couldn’t find one that I wanted. Then I almost slapped myself. I could just make my own. I looked at the many prototypes I’d made in Summer 2018 and I was vastly disappointed. I scraped all of those ideas and went to the store. My guy was with me, along with our little baby, and he helped me pick out materials. What are the best colors? What thread is going to work the best- turns out I’m obsessed with waxed linen thread, so that’s what I use. We stood there, going back and forth. Real leather? Vegan leather? Vinyl? Copy paper? Sketch paper? Black buttons? White buttons? So many questions, so many thoughts, way too complicated. I’m already indecisive. Why can’t it all be simple?

Then my guy said what do you want it to be. So I cut out all the noise, I picked out the materials and I made something new. Something simple, with a button, a flexible cover for bending or sketching across a knee, and several different page pattern types. Grid. Blank. and then later, Lined.  Then, I held the finished product in my hand, (yes I’m always, actively, trying to make them better) and I cried. I had finally finished something, I FINISHED something, without quitting “before I could fail” (ironic and all that), and it actually looked great. The quality was great.

So then, with loads of encouragement from several friends and my guy, I started my Etsy shop. (check it out here). I am not here to make all of these vast claims that it is wildly successful. I’m proud that I started it but I haven’t been able to put my all into it as I thought I would. This semester has been hard on me, as it was my first at the new University and I have Naomi to care for, and I haven’t had much time. That being said, 2020 is a new year. It’s time to look forward, not backward, and so I’m going to be implementing all of the things I learn over the next month.

 

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And that’s why I’ve taken it an extra step. I’m really excited to say that I’ve finally created a website for my journals. It’s very new. Very, very, very new. I do not claim to be an expert on all things small businesses or to know all there is to know about being a founder/owner, or life, in general, but I’m doing the best I can. As an aspect of my 31 Days of Introspection, I’m taking a long hard look at my skills as a business owner, taking steps to growing my business, and will be learning all I can about marketing, product photography, and SEO. I’m also in the process of creating a logo that will perfectly fit into the brand of my small business. One that aesthetically fits with my photos as well. I am very excited about this! This is one journey I’m ready to take. Keep an eye open for more updates. If you’d like to support a small business, please buy a journal!

 

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Check out the tentative website here!

The Elyzabeth Collection

 

Check out the Instagram account here!
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(All photos on my instagram and other social media sites have been taken by me or my friend Colleen Watson. If you like them, feel free to like or leave me a comment!)