Wednesday, August 3, 2016

When Our Stats Become a Lurking Danger . . . and a Bit of a Talkfest

We can say we don't care all that much about our social media stats ... but honestly?  Deep inside we do.  

And while we wrestle against them being the be-all-&-end-all, numbers do allow us to take the temperature of our social media presence.  They clue us into what lights up our unique community.  They inform us, by the world's standards, if we're effectively touching others.

But the truth is that we'll never know 'til we reach heaven how many souls our lives have impacted.  And by then it won't matter, because we'll be so enthralled in worshiping Jesus Christ.

*

I do get a daily read of how readers many click onto LindaStoll.net, but I have no idea how many subscribers I have, all you who read these posts via email.  Those stats might be out there somewhere, but I have no idea how to access them.

And perhaps, that's just as well.  Those numbers could prove to be quite a depressing reality ... or could swell my ego in a most unpleasant way.  I'm not interested in either option.

Because all the numerous numbers in our lives {what the scale proclaims, the bills in our wallets, the great heaps of possessions, those pesky online stats} don't define us.  We're defined by our Savior!

It's only when we begin to let those numbers call the shots in our lives that we find ourselves in deep and troubled waters.  Because they will never never ever be enough.  And we'll end up constantly comparing ourselves with others and always feel like we're missing the boat.

Like we're less than.

What a lie from the enemy.

*

It's a year since this little online home sprang to life, and I'm happy to share the five posts that have kicked off the biggest conversations.  No, these diologues aren't necessarily the posts with the most hits, and yes, a couple were connected with a giveaway.  But I think they're definitely worth another go 'round ... especially for you who are new to these parts.

Because these posts feature YOU!  You guys are such fine conversationalists!

Simply click on each title to read and enjoy!

Meanwhile, we're head off for our annual trip to Camp in NY's Adirondack Mountains with 22 extended family members {gulp!}.  And because I truly believe that to be cloistered in my room blogging would be a cryin' shame, I'll start writing again when I roll back into town.


*  

#1
May 23


Hey welcome!

We've been having a blast around here this month, sharing our living spaces, our challenges and brainstorms, our visions for what our dwellings are just begging to become ...

*

#2
November 4


Sarah Bessey describes herself as mum of 4 tinies and a writer, speaker, and recovering know-it-all.  When a post bearing her name comes up in my reader, I'm there.  She's that thought-provoking, challenging, inspiring.  I'm a fan.

And though our theology might differ here and there, it matters not.  Because yes, there's room for non-essential differences in the Body of Christ ... but only if ...

*

#3
January 4


As we've been busy pinning up our crisp new wall calendars and filling our uncreased datebooks with those all important birthdays and appointments, many bloggers have been sharing their plans and dreams for the new year.  I've eagerly been savoring your posts and have been inspired, intrigued, and occasionally fascinated by your carefully selected One Word, your resolutions and goals, all that God's calling you to do, to be, to accomplish in these 365 days ahead.

Truly.  But no ...
*

#4
April 1


Ouch.  That stings!

I don't know where I first heard this question ... or if it sprang into living color in my own imagination.  All I can say is that it keeps on hitting home for me {big time} whenever I'm courageous enough to honestly gaze into my own mirror and allow God to gently poke and prod so that He can reveal the true state of ...

*

#5
March 28


Potential pitfalls in any relationship are countless and plentiful, aren't they.

Too often, these sometimes ghastly occurrences emerge as no big surprise.  Truth be told, long ago we glimpsed the writing on the wall, but we were somehow unready, unwilling, or unable to wisely deal with attitudes or behaviors {our own or our spouse's} that ranged from mildly irritating to downright abusive ...

*



*

&

at

60 comments:

  1. I do check my stats regularly. I'll explain why.

    For a start I find that about 80% of my visitors are new readers, and the rest are my regular returners for whom I am very grateful.

    I post a lot of humourous stories/articles and I have noticed that these tend to attract the new readers. They come looking for something funny; which is good. Because laughter releases dolphins within us and they tickle us from inside to make us laugh. But hopefully, whilst reading the funny stories these newcomers also venture onto the Christian articles and, perhaps, get to know about Christ for the first time. If only one person does that; then it's all been worth while.

    Whatever we write; let our Blog be the one that Jesus would want to read.

    God bless.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don't you just love when those 'dolphins' come to call?

      ;-}

      And yes, yours is a good reminder, Victor ... for those of us who love Jesus, our blogs are an ongoing platform that proclaim who He is in our lives and how He impacts every area of who we are.

      You're so right. May our words be ones that would delight Him, first and foremost!

      Thanks for kicking off this conversation, Victor. From far across the sea you make your presence known! I am grateful ...

      Delete
  2. I hope you have a wonderful time on your trip with your family, Linda! It was so nice to see your sweet comment on my blog today! What an encouragement! May God richly bless you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So very good to rub shoulders today, Cheryl!

      Delete
  3. I hope you have a great trip, Linda!

    Statistics? I checked them for the first time in months the other day, and was a bit surprised at how the growth.

    But it's neither here nor there for me. I write the best I can, and put it out there the best I can. No worries beyond that.

    http://blessed-are-the-pure-of-heart.blogspot.com/2016/08/your-dying-spouse-189-personality.html

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And you said this, Andrew -->' I write the best I can, and put it out there the best I can. No worries beyond that.'

      No truer words were spoken. Thanks for showing us a simple key on how to take the striving out of this whole social media thing.

      Delete
  4. Have a wonderful time with your family, Linda!

    I do check my stats because a) I'm nosy, and b) I want to see if my work has any impact at all. Sometimes I get disappointed but I try to leave it in God's hands and figure He arranges who sees what I've written.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 'I'm nosy.'

      That's cute!

      ;-}

      And amen to releasing our writing {and everything else we do} into God's hands. I like to think of it as playing to an audience of One.

      Delete
  5. Great encouragement, friend! Because I must admit the numbers do contribute to the lack of blogging... "They are dismal so what's the point?" <<< A common thought going through my mind. But also just not sure period if my heart is in it anymore.

    Enjoy your family vacation! So wonderful!! I'm off tomorrow to visit with my hubby again. Praying these visits come to an end soon as a result of him being home on a more permanent basis.

    Love you.
    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope that you have a sweet, restful visit together. Your husband's service to our country has been a long haul for you both. Please know how much we appreciate the sacrifices you're both making so that our country is safer and stronger.

      And if it's any encouragement to you, I've learned much along the way from your writing, Beth. Your are wise and strong and have blessed so many of us with your insightful words and your determination to put your faith to work.

      Thank you for dropping by today. Please know it means the world ...

      ;-}

      Delete
  6. Have a lovely time, Linda!

    I agree with you on the stats -- I don't look at mine either -- because even if no one read my words except for my mother and sister, I would still write because it brings me to the feet of God, where I encounter him! xo Come back relaxed and rejuvenated!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 'I would still write because it brings me to the feet of God, where I encounter him!'

      Wow, Valerie. You are an incredible role model for me, for us.

      Period.

      Your priorities are certainly where they need to be. I admire you so ...

      ;-}

      Delete
  7. I rarely look at my stats anymore either. I'm happier when I forget about them. :) Enjoy the time with your family and we'll see you when you get back!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That'll be the day when I forget about them! Honestly! But they hold much less power over me than they used to. Probably because of the conversations that emerge.

      Like this one.

      Thanks, friend ...

      Delete
  8. Yes, we must never be defined by anything/anyone other than GOD! Have a wonderful trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen, girl. He alone is worthy to be praised. He calls the shots. Without Him we would have nothing of eternal value to offer.

      Where would we be without Jesus ...

      Delete
  9. Happy Anniversary! Have a great time in upstate NY! I'll be in Old Forge/Big Moose next month. Looking forward to it for many reasons! See you when you get back :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 'For many reasons!'

      Yes, that I certainly understand, June.

      Delete
  10. Such a necessary reminder that we are defined by our Savior, not by our stats. Thank you, Linda. Have a wonderful, rejuvenating vacation! Blessings and hugs to you!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're so sweet, Trudy. What an encourager you are!

      ;-}

      Delete
  11. It's never healthy to play the comparison game, and checking stats starts that negative ball rolling. I just pray that my blog and my novels touch others for Christ, and inspire them. Even if I change only one life, my words have been well worth it.
    Blessings, Linda, and have a marvelous vacation with family!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And once that negative ball starts careening out of control, we're really in a bad place.

      I used to pray that 1 life prayer. Often. My heart is resonating with yours, Martha ...

      Delete
  12. I used to really watch my stats, Linda, and like you've said it can be a trap that discourages us rather than gives us useful information. I now take an occasional peek at my stats, though I don't really know what they mean! And I do occasionally check out how many subscribers I have, though that too is not all that useful to me. I do like the little emails I get on who's newly subscribed, though I've set it not to notify me when someone unsubscribes! Too depressing! But I'm sure it could be that I have more who unsubscribe than subscribe! So I could, for all intents and purposes, be like a boat taking on more water than I'm keeping out! Anywho! Thanks for the encouragement to keep our eye on what truly matters in blogging! Always a treat to visit, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For sure, I'd do the same ... want to be notified when someone subscribes ... and not want to hear the news when someone backs away.

      ;-{

      That's one of blogging's challenges ... when someone chooses for whatever reason, to break away from the online relationship you've cultivated. You see them here and there ... but they never drop in any more ...

      Meanwhile, I surely doubt that you have more who unsubscribe than subscribe. Really, Beth. You continue to gift us with such powerful, life-changing posts on marriage. I always, always walk away a bit wiser after an online session at your place!

      How 'bout giving us some CEUs??!!

      Delete
  13. Yes, and all the Amens! I had to learn either I wrote for applause or because something inside me lit up when I did. Thus, 5 years later I'm still at it. Not perfectly or consistently...but still here none the less :) Enjoy your trip! I'm just returning from a 15 person beach trip with family...good thing we all get along!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love how you put this, Alecia ... 'something inside me lit up when I did.'

      I absolutely resonate with you on this. After 8 years of blogging, something sparkles every time I hit that PUBLISH button. I have no choice but to believe it's His smile ...

      All praises go to Him.

      Delete
  14. You've got so many loyal and loving friends here. You have established a true community of conversation and thoughtful consideration of ideas. You built this. You. A place of loving trust is immeasurable. Enjoy your break and your family!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Friend ... that you would call this a place of loving trust makes my day. I can't tell you.

      I praise God for this community. For He has built it one conversation at a time. I am beyond grateful for His faithfulness and His grace.

      I couldn't be happier ...

      Delete
  15. I just finished reading your blog and have now put it into the "Linda Creekside" folder - very well written, Linda, and it is now time to not be concerned about your blog for a number of days. These past weeks have been busy for you and your time at camp will be a beneficial time for you.

    {via email}

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It means alot that you save each and every post ... even if I'm not writing at Creekside anymore! You're such a huge encourager in my life ... and yes, I am ready for a change of pace!

      {sigh of relief & happiness}

      x

      Delete
  16. Enjoy your camping trip--to the COOL mountains--it is HOT here in TX! Wish I were headed for the mountains!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can't imagine that heat you're enduring, Lulu! But take heart! 'Cause when we're dragging out our snow shovels, you'll be puttering outside in a cute little sundress! Won't be long ...

      ;-}

      Delete
  17. I probably do check stats too much- but I also know that they aren't the most important thing. If a post has a meaningful impact on one person that's better than lots of people clicking on it but not really engaging. And as you say we don't really get the full picture of what God is doing.
    I hope you have a wonderful trip with your family.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I absolutely agree. Lots of people clicking on a post makes those stats come to life ... but when few take the time to say 'hi' and no kind of meaningful conversation springs to life, you do begin to wonder if it's worth the time it took to offer the invitation ...

      I keep this thought in mind --> I'm playing to an audience of One. And yes, that recalibrates the whole thing for me. 'Cause it's His blog, not mine.

      And that takes the pressure off!

      ;-}

      Delete
  18. So glad to know that you are going to be able to get away. And thanks for the helpful reminder that it's not all about the numbers. I have a tendency to become overwhelmed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hear ya', Michele. And that sense of overwhelm is worth noticing, isn't it ... kind of like a mini-SOS that something's just a bit out of kilter.

      Delete
  19. Linda, this is so true. I can definitely be a bit obsessed with the numbers. I took a "Stat Sabbatical" recently and did not look at any of them for a week and it was such a freeing time. To interact where I wanted to, not where I felt I "needed" to. Thanks for this reminder, and enjoy your vacation!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You said this -->'To interact where I wanted to, not where I felt I "needed" to.'

      I love that, Christa. Yes, please. That's where I want to be, to release any kind of striving, racing here and there, and simply enjoying what I do best ...

      Let's take the pressure off ourselves!

      Delete
  20. I have no stats to watch, I have no idea if my writing effects anyone but I love what Valerie said: "it [writing] brings me to the feet of God." There is something about expressing yourself. I learned this week that a gratitude list is not as effective as EXPRESSING gratitude and an experiment proved it makes a person happier when gratefulness is expressed.

    And so when the words are laid out on the blank document or sheet of paper, they come alive to explain so much about oneself, a situation or issue and to express great appreciation for our Almighty, All-loving, All Just God. That, to me, is what writing is all about. My goal is to reveal the nature and character of God for all eternity.

    Linda, have fun with the kiddies at camp. What good memories you all have built into your lives!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great point, Buds!

      We can be as grateful as we want but if we don't express it loud and clear, everyone misses out on the blessing. Even if, for some reason, those words of appreciation get stuck in our throat, they must be spoken.

      The Spirit helps those words slip out on wings of grace ...

      Miss you, dear dear friend!

      Delete
  21. I used to obsess and stress over my social media stats.. now I just dont care! Hahaha.. not sure what brought about the change, but it certainly is for the better! - http://www.domesticgeekgirl.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hear ya' Gingi ... slowly but surely they wield less power over my view of what's happening around here. And that, for sure, is a very good thing!

      ;-}

      Delete
  22. How funny, Linda. I'm the opposite of you: I RARELY look at daily page view stats, but I DO know how many subscribers I have 'cause I get an email about it. I remember your marriage post. That was so good!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Different strokes for different folks. Whatever can inform and encourage us, yes? And no thanks to anything that leads to an excessive striving.

      I'm glad our paths cross, friend. You encourage me!

      Delete
  23. Guilty of checking my stats. Haha. But not to the point of obsessing. Just want to know what's going on on my page and sometimes clients ask about my blog as it also serves as portfolio for me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ohh ... I like that it serves as a portfolio for you, Lux. Would love to hear more ...

      Delete
  24. Enjoy our vacation! I try very hard not to be concerned with numbers. It is a danger of being social media though. Thank you for your wisdom, friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yep, social media numbers so easily become a ginormous pitfall, where we can lose our bearings and lose sight of what's most important.

      May we find our identity in Christ alone!

      Delete
  25. I hope you are having a wonderful trip, my friend! 22 people is quite a lot. Many prayers for you all ;). Numbers are my nemesis far too often. Like you mentioned, from the scale to our stats, they can all wreak havoc on us. Taking so much time off of blogging this summer made me truly realize how much those pesky stats can get in my head. I'm trying to get back in my routine now and hoping to not focus on them as much as I have at other times. And don't even get me started on those 3 numbers on the scale. I've been staying off that little machine a lot this summer too. Hopefully that new habit will continue :).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love how you've made plenty of time for your family this summer, Candace. I'm glad blogging wasn't around when my kiddos were little. I fear I wouldn't have been as wise a steward of it as you have been ...

      ;-{

      Delete
  26. Linda,

    I pray you have a blessed and refreshing time with your family. So true what you wrote...in light of eternity, what does it matter? Our identity rests in Christ. Love to you :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Christ alone.

      Yes, yes. That's our byline, our watchword, friend ...

      Delete
  27. How true, Linda.

    Have a wonder filled time in the mountains - 22 people - wow - you are blessed!

    ReplyDelete
  28. Thanks for sharing this, Linda! It never occurred to me to write about my stats for this Wednesday's link-up. Your post made me think about how often and why I check my blog's stats, and for that I am grateful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The whole subject sure has sparked a thoughtful conversation, Gena. So glad you've joined us!

      Delete
  29. Hi Linda, I found your post on the Loft for today's social media topic. I try not to get too caught up in numbers either and as you said, it could either depress us or bloat us up. In both cases it's because we're comparing ourselves to others and again, it's Jesus who defines us. Amen for that!
    I hope you had a great time away with your family. Wishing you blessings!
    Marva | SunSparkleShine

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sun Sparkle Shine! Your pen name is awesome! I'll be dropping in to see you soon ...

      Delete
  30. LOVE!!! This post is such an important one!! It is so easy to get all hung up on numbers in the social media world. I love how you take us back to the basics....that our worth is not found in followers, friends, or pins. It is found in Christ. Thank you for linking this wonderful post at The Loft!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I saw your emphasis on social media this week, I just knew I had to share this discussion with your tribe, Leah!

      Delete

'I want the people in my life to know that when they come to me, with whatever is on their mind or heart, they will be heard. I am dedicated to hearing the hearts of those around me.'
~ Adam McHugh, The Listening Life

Linda