The Underbelly of Blogging * Sloppy Boundaries

We have everyday habits - formative practices - that constitute daily liturgies.  By reaching for my smartphone every morning, I had developed a ritual that trained me toward a certain end: entertainment and stimulation via technology.  Regardless of my professed worldview or particular Christian subculture, my unexamined daily habit was shaping me into a worshiper of glowing screens.
- Tish Harrison Warren - 


If you aren't a blogger, you might be tempted to hit the delete button.  But would you humor me and stay with us?  Because if you're online, if you're all wrapped up in FB or Instagram or Twitter, if you're obsessively tethered to social media or games {Candy Crush anyone?}, there might be some gold for you to mine in the conversations that this Underbelly of Blogging series is sure to birth.

For I think it's fair to say that none of us want our legacy to be that of a worshiper of glowing screens.

Avid bloggers live to write, to create, to connect, to work the crowd.  We're quick to sing the praises of camaraderie, of connection, of community.  But we don't talk much about the hidden underbelly of our craft, those places where, over time, we find ourselves feeling unexpectedly weak.

'Less than.'  Vulnerable.  Hurt.  Frustrated.  Disappointed.  Exhausted.

Perhaps convicted.   

Left to our own unexamined devices, these unspoken realities of embracing extensive online community can easily morph into scenarios that lead to an off-kilter lifestyle, emotional unsettledness, relationship issues ... and yes, our spiritual downfall.


Boundaries exist to keep us healthy, balanced, and safe.  These continued well-considered decisions speak volumes about what we value and prize.  They allow our 'yes' to be 'yes' and our 'no' to be 'no'.  When we live a boundaried life, we embrace a joyful freedom as we pursue our calling, passions, and giftedness with parameters that are authentic, wise, and strong ... all while being respectful to others in the process.

In eleven years of blogging, here's what sloppy blogging boundaries have often looked like for me:

-  Consistently creeping out of bed at o'dark thirty to be one of the first to add my post to a link-up has led me to neglect my husband's early morning sleepy companionship.

-  Reaching for the phone to approve / post readers comments has led to endless early morning surfing which has shoved any kind of meaningful devotional times right out the window.

-  Rudely tap-tapping away on a post or scanning other websites while responding to a loved one's phone call has kept me from being fully present to our conversation.

-  Setting a time frame to write that repeatedly spills over and intrudes on previous plans or commitments leaves me wondering where the day went and leaves those left in the lurch feeling disrespected.

-  Spending far too much energy surfing around speaks to a restlessness in my spirit that's not being tended to, produces lethargy and whiffs of anxiety, and keeps me from getting the physical exercise I need.

-  Participating in late evening link-ups and more surfing has led me to, once again, neglect my husband's companionship, and leaves my brain stimulated by all that blue light which in turn leads me to toss and turn, unable to get to sleep.

- Wondering if my readers will still be there if I take an online break has kept me from doing exactly what I know I needed to do.  Take a break from my endless self-absorption of being online.

I'd love to tell you that all these challenges have been tied up and taken care of.   Some have been clearly resolved, others are still a work in progress.  I don't want to be a worshiper of glowing screens.  But I've skated on awfully thin ice.

You, too?

Also in this mini-series ...



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