I recently wrote about my interest in engaging in a Depth Year, one in which I will focus on what I have and won’t engage in any new endeavors. A depth year would give me an opportunity to figure out what’s important to me and focus on enhancing skills. I haven’t been so great at that – I always feel scattered and like I’m not doing enough.
A depth year should be really easy for me right now. We are dead broke, I’m in the throes of motherhood, and I have almost no time to myself. I can’t go out and buy tons of crafty things and I’m spending all of my time vacuuming toilet paper off of the carpet in our dining room, washing and folding clothes, nursing a baby, going to work, and cooking scrambled eggs. At the end of the day, when everyone except the nursing baby is in their beds, how can I possible start a new quilting project? Well, I think I’m beginning to notice a trend:
Instagram is really getting in the way.
Instagram is a constant source of pleasure and pain for me. I love seeing everything that everyone is creating, but I can never add up. No one can – most of the people I’m following use Instagram to help supplement their livelihood – they gain followers who buy their stuff and everything they post is carefully curated. It’s so hard to stay focused when I’m constantly scrolling through pictures that are perfectly lit, purposely staged, and have branded color schemes.
There are too many ideas. Too many distractions. I see a quilt and automatically yearn to make my own just like it. Never mind that the fabric alone is several hundred dollars and the time it will take costs me even more. And then I feel dissatisfied, like I’m not doing enough – if that person has the time and money to make that quilt, why don’t I?
Now, the irrational part of my brain says “delete, delete, delete the app from your phone.” But I don’t want to be extreme – there are times when IG has done some great things for me. In fact, I learned about bullet journaling and the concept of the depth year from Instagram. Why would I just delete it? But I believe that I need to cull the accounts that I’m following, yet again. I feel like I’m constantly doing that. And who should I follow? Only bookish and writerly people? If I want to immerse myself in books and words and ideas – then the answer is probably yes.
This week’s goal: unfollow the professional knitters and quilters on Instagram unless they are someone that I interact with. No matter how beautiful their accounts are, they are trying to sell me something that I am in no position to buy right now. If something changes, I can always refollow them in the future, but for now: it’s time to focus.
What about you? What gets in the way when you’re trying to reach your goals? How do you manage to push those things aside and stay focused?