Today is the four-week anniversary of my pause from focusing on elite sport.
For moral support, my wife’s been taking a 28-day break from Facebook . I think her break has been tougher because Facebook started an email campaign against her. I had a similar thing happen to me in 2010 and forewarned her that the spam-bots were crafty!
I’ve been Facebook free since the start of 2012 – it can be done.
My break has been 100% positive – I can’t find a single drawback to my life from pausing from professional sport.
Training – with less web usage (particularly twitter), I suddenly had time to train in the morning before my kids get up. While it was “only” one extra run per week, I felt great that entire day from the early session. It’s worth noting that 1 extra session per week, boosted 14% of my waking hours. Early training is high-return exercise.
Reading – I’ve been talking about reading at home for more than a year. I do most of my reading on airplanes and, subtly “blame” my kids for not being able to read at home. In the last month, I’ve managed to read three books at home, which is more than the previous twelve months! The books were: The Gift of Therapy; Living a Jewish Life; and Life’s Greatest Lessons. Turns out I was the issue, not my kids (who remain full of energy and a source of self-knowledge).
Patience – It could be the normal ebb and flow of parenting relationships but, as I reduce my time online, I’ve had more tolerance with my kids. Less in-bound noise seems to result in better relationships around me.
As for the outside world, Life Goes On…
My media filter isn’t complete and I heard all the major stories (and a few that haven’t hit the press yet). The difference is they filtered through gradually, rather than having to ferret them out. While I might be less informed on athletic gossip, I know enough to meet the needs of my friends, family and team. “Fresh news” is nearly always incorrect – I’m better off without it (links to my blog on improved thinking).
Turns out I was fooling myself about my need for constant input on, and criticism of, the choices of others. Not the first time.
Another debt of gratitude to my wife (links to my gratitude list).
The cost of the status quo is always hidden. I’m glad I was willing to try a change.