Several years ago, my man and I went on an unplugged holiday to Sayulita Mexico.
We promised ourselves + each other, that there would be zero internet activity (unless there was an emergency of course).
No email checking, blog updating or social media posting.
We were going to relax, rejuvenate and enjoy our time. Sans technology.
‘Cause apparently, it’s all the rage to unplug. And really good for your mind + body + soul.
After a day exploring this tiny, quaint, surf village – where there is literally nothing to do, except eat, shop and play on the beach, we were bored.
I mean REALLY bored.
I had read almost 3/4 of my book. He had paddled a canoe out into the waters near our hotel. We’d sunned ourselves (a little too much). Quite frankly, we’d done it all and we were feeling stir crazy.
So we looked at each other, feeling defeated (yet hopeful), and I said, “Do you wanna download a movie?“.
So much for the tech free vacay! 😉
On our next trip, back to Sayulita, earlier this year, I decided I was going to give it another shot. No phone. No internet. Nada. I didn’t even last a day this time. I blame it on the cat-sitter texting me updates on our little ones. But to be honest, I just had no interest in being completely disconnected.
As we were going to sleep, I asked (rhetorically of course), “Why am I so addicted to Instagram? And blogging? And the internet?“. And my sweet man, who is always asking me to be self-reflexive (without realizing it) said, “Maybe you have a fear of missing out“.
I felt myself get a little squirrely. Partly because I had been found out. And mostly because he was oh-so right.
Fear. Of. Missing. Out.
The phenom that is the internet has brought about this new and perplexing issue.
Along with its obvious advantages like up-to-the-minute news, widespread access to information of all kinds, and a new way of connecting with others, there are also some (sorta) frightening pitfalls. One of which is FOMO.
It wasn’t until my beau pointed it out that I realized he was right.
I’ve gotten so used to pushing send or hitting publish, every time I have something to say. Or every time I want to connect with someone. I’ve also gotten used to knowing what my friends are up to. Even the “friends” whom I’ve never met. I don’t want to miss out on the latest news, updates and happenings. Hence, FOMO.
Do you fall prey to FOMO? I think on some level we all do. Hence the immense popularity of social media these days.
This brings me to The August Break.
The idea, which I first heard about several years back from a fellow blogger + creative force of nature, Susannah Conway (who coincidentally is the creator of the first online course that I ever took back in 2009), is simple.
No blogging for the month of August.
No new posts, newsletters or updates.
Instead, I’ll be dusting off my neglected cameras – a Canon 7D + Polaroid SX-70 – and shooting photos everyday. A minimum of 1 finished photograph per day. But more, if inspired. I’ll post the images to Instagram (which will then auto-post to Twitter + Facebook + Flickr). But other than that I won’t be updating this blog or posting new/unscheduled musings on social media.
Here’s a list of daily photo prompts from Susannah that I may or may not adhere to. I just love that she gives you a jumping off point from which to get creative.
The point of this break?
I’m sure it’s different for everyone who’s participating. But for me, I have a deep desire to re-connect to my creative eye. To get behind the lens of the camera and tune into my senses again.
I also have the urge to write. To finish the digital experience I’m creating for all of you.
And in order to finish it and put some beautiful touches on it, I need space to create.
So that I can release it on
September 11, 2013 – the 1 year anniversary of The Girl Who Knows.
There you have it. The August Break.
And the official launch date of The Birthday Month Experience.
Interested in joining The August Break? We’re 300+ strong – and you can join at anytime from now through the end of August. Here’s the site with all the info.
I hope you have a brilliant, sunny, creative and inspired month of August.
I’ll see you back here again one more time before I go, for an extra special “August Break” edition of Miscellany for your Weekend (a few days early).