A gift to myself: unplugged

unplugged …. originally referred to a musician who performed without electronics and amplification and things that made him/her sound different from their original voice.

It now often refers to more of a literal meaning.  When someone says they are unplugged, they may mean they have literally unplugged their electronic equipment and are not communicating via the technology of now.

I work in the field of communications, I talk to people in many different ways.  In person, in writing, on the phone, on the internet, in text, on various applications.  When I decide to unplug, I lose touch with many.

That is exactly what I did for the past four days.  Mostly.

I did call my mom to check on her.  I also spent the entire Christmas Eve day with her.  We wrapped presents, she watched me clean her house, we talked about many things, she napped, and we celebrated Christmas with a church service and food and opening presents as a family.

I did stop by Facebook for a hot minute (literally minutes only) to say hi, wish everyone a Merry Christmas.  But I didn’t scroll through every post.  I didn’t answer any messages.  I didn’t ask any questions.

I did check my email.  I only shared one link about mental health in Iowa.  I didn’t view my Reader.  I didn’t answer any emails.  I figured they’d all be there today when I got back to work.

I didn’t answer texts on my phone.  I didn’t even read them.

I spent Tuesday, Christmas Day, reflecting on my blessings, sleeping off and on all day, writing this post.  I thought about what my original voice is – and made decisions on how to share that original voice in the coming year.  I enjoyed being unplugged.

I’ve realized there’s always some drama, some crisis, some fire to put out.  Most of the time, they are not my dramas, dilemmas or fires.  They generally get handled and taken care of, without me.  I don’t need to solve everyone else’s problems.  

I talked to, in person, the people that matter most to me.  I called a few that are too far away to talk to in person.  These are the people that lift me up and share good news and throw away the bad news.  These are my friends that call me into greatness and relish the joy I can bring to them.

Today I approach my work and my life with a lightness of being.  Sometimes just stepping away, unplugging, lets you see what is really valuable.  I’ve realized I enjoy being surrounded by people who are happy.  Here’s hoping this joyous season you can find the people who make you happy too.

photo by: kevin dooley

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