Updated: May 19
August 13, 2019
I've gone quiet on social media... I know you don't know what that is - social media. It's the way people keep in touch now. Nearly everyone does it. I've stopped a few times in the past, usually for roughly the same reason, feeling like the effort was consuming too much of my time. This time there is a little of that... But mostly it was a reading something in a book that caused my current retreat. It was Seth Godin's wonderful "Marketing Now," and in particular a passage near the end where he described our activities on social media as a "performance". That really hit me. I think he's right. A large part of the reason we share on social media is to present a highly curated presentation of the life we want others to think we live. We share only select pieces, and then tailor these to present a particular image or message, usually the image or message we desire others to think of us. The clincher was when I asked myself if I thought such an activity was a good use of my time? And I decided it was not. And so, I simply stopped posting.
The very last time I did this I produced a book - Going Alone. Leaving social media at that time proved to be a very good use of time. I rejoined social media when the book was done, perhaps to promote the book. That was in December 2018. I have left again.
In the few weeks I've been off social media lightning has struck twice, and I again produced another book, this one called "Freeway Bible Study." The completion of this second book was indeed another result of making better use of my time. I'd been writing the book for a year-and-a-half, and the content was in good shape and ready to be produced into formal book form. I think most of the editing was done. I should receive the very first physical copy tomorrow! I'm excited to see it for the first time. Getting a physical copy of one's own book is a thrilling thing... It's almost like seeing one's new child for the first time.
Finishing the new book at roughly the same time I've left social media was not a coincidence. And though my Bible study book is done, I have not stopped reading the Bible, which I continue to do every day, one chapter a day. My formal and very public Bible study stopped because I'd reached what I now call the end of the Bible, Exodus 21. But more about that perhaps tomorrow.
Be safe my friend... But not too safe.
PS Writing these letters to you my old friend is another example of how I've begun making better use of my time. I only wish you were really around to read them. I'd love to read your reply. I do miss our talks.
My name is Kurt Bell.
You can learn more about The Good Life in my book Going Alone.
Be safe... But not too safe.