If there has been one constant in my life over the past decade, it has been writing. Writing this blog, writing a book, writing speeches, writing TV segments each week, writing interview questions, writing proposals and pitches. Me, my keyboard and a cup of coffee have been staples in my life for the past decade. So much so, that my kids often hand me their essays and say, “Here mom, can you proof read this?” And I never do… I want their words to be their own, not mine.
So when I attended a ‘lunch and learn’ on podcasting last week, and a lovely woman came up to me and said, “Erica, I have been a fan since day 1. I have been reading your blog for almost 10 years and I sense a shift. You aren’t writing as much as you used to.”
And I realized it’s starting to show.
Evolution, growth, less virtual experiences, more in real life experiences. Being in the moment has taken more of a front seat in my life than capturing it. Frenetic blog posting and writing about things that maybe don’t matter have taken a backseat.
IF YOU DIDN’T POST IT, DID IT REALLY HAPPEN?
And the answer is, yes. I have come to learn.
I found that some of my best moments happen when I put my phone down and don’t think about social media or what other people are doing. Concerts, dinners out, hanging with my family, even Halloween last night… so much has gone undocumented over the past few years for me, whereas before, I shared everything and then some.
Now don’t get me wrong – I still share. It’s part of my job. I share funny things I see in the world, life lessons and realizations I’ve made, but I feel less compelled to WRITE and more compelled to EXPERIENCE. Experience a life-changing moment with someone on their mat in my yoga class, experience a deep connection with my life coaching client when I see the shift is finally taking place, experience candid conversations with people in a room after I finish giving a talk, connect with an awesome person at an event and walk away smarter and wiser after having chatted with them. And instead of writing or sharing these experiences, I have come to simply hold them in my heart.
I have found this to make all the difference.
And that’s weird for someone who has written almost daily for a full decade.
Maybe it’s because I have grown to see social media become possibly more toxic than good. I ask you: when do we flip through our social media accounts? Not when we’re having fun… but when we are bored. And if we’re feeling vulnerable in that moment, the FOMO sets in, and jealousy can rear its ugly head. And then feeling envious, we feel like we then HAVE to share something awesome at the next event we will be at to prove that our lives are so great, so fun. And then perhaps the cycle is then perpetuated for someone else.
For me, the lines online have always been blurry – I work in social media, and so much of my work is sharing my life. But an evolution and growth have taken place, and so I apologize if you get me less in your inbox. My hope is that we connect in real life instead.
And a final reminder, cuz I have come to learn this first hand: just because it’s not on social media, doesn’t mean it didn’t happen.
What do you think?