It's been 6 months since my last post. As a boy raised in Catholic dogma, whenever I state words in that cadence I am immediately taken back to a tiny, darkened church confessional wherein I would formally commence the sacrament of confession with, "Forgive me Father, for I have sinned. It has been (___) months since my last confession". Me, kneeling on a padded stoop, a priest on the other side of a square foot screen providing just enough bandwidth for conversation, and for the imagination to conjure the physical features of the person on the other side, based only upon voice and mannerisms.
Confessions and apologies have been on my mind a lot, since that last blog post (ironically written about a preacher). I've been equally absent on the social mediums in which I used to frequent. Available time is the biggest culprit, but I think what my subconscious is trying to tell my conscious mind is that my life stage now is yearning for some reflection and introspection.
Our digital reliant world has turned us all into selfie-taking, video-making, advice-giving, omni-posting narcissists. I have always believed this, even and especially when I was ensnared within the hamster wheel myself, up to and including that last blog post in November 2021. I was at my lowest point in 2020 when I was podcasting every day, blogging about my podcast, and sending out posts to cross-promote my podcast on multiple social channels. It was madness. And it was driven by narcissism. Sure I told myself that it was all about a movement I was creating around "being better at being human", but my minute by minute checking my post results had little to do which how much attention I was bringing to one cause or another. It was about how much attention I was bringing to me. Maslow had me all figured out long before I did.
In the intervening months which have followed I have found hours of time to be spent on other things. I'll be honest, most of those extra hours have been quickly consumed by work, but I have also tried to pause and be a mere observer rather than a participant. Unsurprisingly ol' "gram" continues to churn out the same amount of the same people stoically dispensing their daily dose of inspo or creativity. Two posts of predictable organic content, followed by an ad imploring us to become more efficient content creators. "9 things you need to have in your content calendar!", "Why your posts aren't converting!", "Increase your social visibility!", and on, and on. For all of its perceived glamour, it must be hell to be an influencer.
Look, it would be the height of hypocrisy to rail against the machine, and the billions who make it churn. As mentioned, it wasn't long ago when I myself was stuck inside. A like-and-follow-obsessed actor relegated to an infinitesimally small corner of the ecosystem, flailing like a drowning man screaming for attention in the middle of an ocean. That sucked. Standing more on the sidelines these past few months, I've decided that if and when I do hop back into that vastness, it's going to be more to satisfy Maslow's third level need, belonging, than his fourth, self esteem. And I hope to be more intentional to satisfying my purpose, rather than an algorithm.
In removing "content" from my calendar, I've appreciated the time afforded to other meaningful things I have in my life. You can too. If you have a content calendar, I dare you. Open it up and delete just one post that the calendar says you must make today. At fairly reasonable frequency, delete another post from the calendar, then another. It's up to you to see how far you take this. I don't want anyone to lose their job. But since we have put a higher priority on posts than we do on say...push-ups, or breakfast, or kissing our daughters goodbye, I challenge you to see a) what you gain by contenting less, and perhaps more importantly, b) what you lose by contenting less. It's humbling to see that whether your content calendar consists of 8 posts a day, or no posts a day, the world ultimately doesn't care. Sorry to break it to you.