The Two-Week Hiatus

Posted by Fitz Villafuerte under Announcements on October 1, 2015

It’s been two weeks since I last wrote an article here, and I’d like to say that I’m back from my hiatus.

The break was unplanned, and I didn’t realize it was necessary until I decided to do it.

I never announced it because it would only trigger questions, which I probably didn’t want to answer.

And I think nobody really noticed that I haven’t been writing except for a handful of people (thank you for your concerns).


An Interesting Conversation

On the last day of August, a friend posted online that she’s taking a break from social media for a whole month. This was something she normally does every September, so it wasn’t really a surprise announcement.

Just in case you’re wondering, her social media diet meant she will not use Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for the whole month. In today’s connected lifestyle, can you imagine yourself doing the same?

A couple of weeks passed, and I was able to chance upon her in a coffee shop one afternoon, where we had an interesting conversation about her annual routine.

“Why do you do it?” I asked.

“Because it helps me refocus my life,” she answered.

“Aren’t you worried about missing out?”

“I do, that’s why it’s great that people in the office often talk about what’s trending online because I could always just ask them to update me.”

“Don’t they tease you about your social media break?”

“No because my guess is that, they’ve accepted it – that it’s my thing – and in fact, they’re always excited to share with me what people have been talking about online during our lunch breaks. You should try it!”

That night, I thought about what she said, and decided to do something similar – that is to temporarily stop blogging, and minimize my social media activities; to spend less time online, and do more things offline.

In my mind, I had no concrete goals, just a genuine interest in seeing what I would do with the extra time that I’ll surely have.


A Mindful Journey

One of the first things I noticed was that being offline allowed me to do a bit of introspection – to examine my life and more importantly, revisit my goals and check if I’m still on track towards achieving them.

This is something we often do while on vacation. By being physically away from our daily life, it’s easier to look at the big picture, and see how we’re doing. It’s a great time to rest, relax, and think.

However in my case, I already had a full schedule of meetings and events for the next couple of weeks, so going away to the beach wasn’t an option.

But I discovered that it didn’t matter, because having some downtime from blogging gave me the opportunity to go on a mindful journey.

Because there were no topics that I needed to research, no article that I needed to write, and no posting schedule that I needed to follow – I gained a few hours of free time each day to simply live and enjoy the present moment.

The break from my usual online routine helped me identify areas in my life that needed management – things, tasks, and most especially, relationships that I’ve taken for granted because I was always busy blogging and spending time in social media.

When I began to starve my online distractions, of mindlessly scrolling through my timeline hoping to see something worthy of a like, share, or tweet, my focus began to shift away from the non-essentials towards the truly important.

When you allow yourself only an hour each day of social media time, you will be more discerning of what you’ll read and won’t waste time with matters that don’t really impact your life.

When I gave myself permission to stop blogging, I suddenly had some time to be creative, to learn new things, and to adjust my blog’s content plan towards a better focal point.

The familiar articles you’ve gotten used to here will continue, but it will have a subtle change in perspective that I hope will improve how we learn about business, investments, and personal finance.

My friend started posting again today, October 1st.

I asked her how was her first day back in social media and she said, “As always, it feels good to be connected again, but with a better handle on what’s truly important while we’re online.”

“How about you,” she asks. “Are you going to start blogging again today?”

“Yes, I will. Thank you for asking,” I replied.

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Photo credit: lng0004


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7 Responses to “The Two-Week Hiatus”

  1. This is a good reminder. I will try this very soon.

  2. MamaBee says:

    I love it. Though in my case, after so many months of consideration and thinking over it thoughtfully, I started last weekend to deactivated some of my social media accounts as well as email subscriptions I don’t actually read. Liberating it is as I am able to focus on some more important matters to me. When I was with the thinking phase, nanghihinayang ako sa mga contacts and all, but then, afterwards I came to realize na I am spending more time with those than doing the real stuff. Kaya yun, finally, some of my accounts online were deactivated na. Thank you for bringing this up.

  3. Lois says:

    Great that you’ve tried it! I used to do it just randomly for usually a week or a few days. But what works for me now is not having a subscription of internet on my mobile phone so that when I leave the house, I don’t have access to it. In those moments, I remember the old days when there was no social media to check everytime. I also avoid taking unnecessary selfies or photos of where I am or the food we eat when I’m outside just to be true to my mantra of no social media and just enjoy utter freedom. Some moments to me seem much precious when I know I didn’t capture it camera or video because I’ll always remember just how I felt

  4. Raymond says:

    Nice insights Sir. Actually, I am one of those who missed your posts. So that’s what happened pala. I guess I should try that one too – “social media diet or detox”. Anyway, welcome back! ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Jaja Asis says:

    I agree with this, Fitz. I tried doing the same thing before, taking a break from social media and the online world at least for two days in a week, to reconnect myself to what’s more important, and partly because I don’t want to be a social media slave. Got to have this back. Thank you for this article. It’s a reminder for me.

  6. Ray says:

    Many of us are “too busy” with life and there are just too many things to do.

    Taking a break is a great way to rest your mind and regain your focus.

    I personally make time for what Jack Canfield calls “Free days.” Spend a day where you don’t do ANYTHING work-related. My chosen day is every Sunday.

    Nothing beats tea and a good non-fiction book on a quiet weekend morning.

    The mind is clear…
    …and 20 inspiring ideas come up every hour before lunch and I’m writing it down (I don’t call that work. It’s fun!). I won’t start writing until Monday though (and it kinda makes Monday exciting – you’re itching to write that idea).

    Anyway, rest is a necessary part of life. It’s important to make time for it regularly.

  7. Mae says:

    Welcome back Sir Fitz!

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