The holiday breaks are always a time to unplug, and we need to do more of it during the year. Unplugging enables us to:
- Refresh our outlook
- Renew our mind
- Re-energize our actions
Unplug or Pull the Plug
The thought of unplugging makes sense, yet it is challenging to do. Maybe “unplug” is too mild of a word. Maybe we should use “pull the plug.” It has a stronger action associated with it, so maybe we would be more inclined to do it.
What unplug does not mean, however, is disengaging from the community around us. We need to serve where we are. It can be with our neighbors next door or our community in another part of town. Our communities need us, and we need to take on this responsibility.
It is an important twist on unplug. Unplugging as an individual enables us to catch our breath, but it cannot be an excuse to ignore our communities.
Plug In to the Right Stuff
“Plug in” is the other side of this equation. It is about being engaged in conversations, responsibilities, and actions required – enhancing our exchanges, accountability, and progress. It is about being in the arena. The arena is a place for real, practical actions, not a place for just showmanship and shouting.
The twist to plugging in is to determine what unhealthy activities we are doing and separate ourselves from them. We plug in to many things without much thought, and they become bad habits. Gossip, junk food, constant TV, or other activities are the ones that drain us of our purpose.
It is vital to plug in to activities that make us better as well as those around us.
Getting the Plug Balance
At times, we unplug when we should plug in. At other times, we plug in when we should unplug. It is a balance of living an unlife life, and we need to embrace the balance and use it to lead better and live more fully.
It is our choice. We need to be mindful in our ways.
How do you balance pulling the plug with plugging in? What are your plans for the two in the new year ahead? Please add your insights in the comments section below!
Join the Conversation
A Twist to Unplugging
I think there is a book developing from the un-life life conversation you have started Jon! I have been intentionally unplugging the past week. What that looks like for me is allowing myself to beat to my own drum and follow my own rhythm – a rare thing it seems. Whenever I allow myself to do this for a few days I find there is a point at which I am ready to plug back in. That’s when I know I have truly restored my energy. Its not that I hide. I still do things and am out in the world. But I am being more and doing less. A cashier yesterday commented that I wasn’t answering my phone. I told her that’s because I was giving her my full attention. She thanked me and told me I just made her day because it was so unusual. Maybe plugging in can simply be about choosing to be present.
This is so true and a great thing you are doing, Susan! One of my key activities for next year is to more actively unplug every week and to plug into more community activities. The social media community is such a wonderful one, but I feel I can add more after unplugging for awhile. Getting the mix of real life community and our social media one is essential.
Thanks for sharing your experiences and for your support! Jon