Why I Stopped my 100 Day Project

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I ended up only lasting about two weeks on the 100 Day project. I had set a goal to write or proofread a post every day for a at least a few minutes. I ended up burning out and stopping. I was hesitant to write this post but I decided to risk being honest and admit that I didn’t finish. I wanted to write about what I learned from this. Another reason that I wanted to post an update was that I had told everyone I was doing the 100 day project and I wanted to let people know what was going on.

At first, I was excited about this project. I have wanted to get in the habit of writing on a regular basis for a while and this project seemed like a good way to create a regular writing habit. The 100 Day Project is a big project with a lot of participants. I figured that since a lot of people do this project, that I would get some support from other participants. I was also picturing doing all the writing projects that I think about doing but don’t do and gaining  new content for my blog.The first week or so went well. I got a lot of writing done and was feeling good about writing every day. Since I was writing more, I started reading the book Bird by Bird by Ann Lamott.

 Then I started to burn out and struggle with this project.During the week I did OK. On the weekends it was hard to get myself to write. Plus, I got sick around that time and didn’t feel well at all. It was hard to get myself to write when I felt sick. There are so many posts on the hashtag that it is easy to get lost and I struggled to read any of them. I felt like it was hard to get interaction with others who are doing this project. I got bored with reading Bird by Bird and didn’t want to finish reading it. I was also uneasy with looking like I did this to promote my blog. I felt uncomfortable writing a post then constantly sending people to my blog because I didn’t do this to promote my blog. I mainly wanted to write more often.

 I also struggled with posting updates on Instagram. I keep thinking that who cares what I post? Who cares if I write every day? I felt out of place with the sea of people posting pretty pictures of their visual art. I was worried my posts were boring and I struggled with what to say on the posts. A post saying, “Hi I proofread a post” is not necessarily Instagram worthy or that interesting. Also, “Hi I wrote today isn’t Instagram worthy either. Some of the writing I was doing is not anything I want to publish and I feel funny saying that in an update. Will people want to see what I wrote? Will it seem rude to say I am writing but I don’t want to show you? I am not comfortable with that part of social media where you are supposed to share everything that you are doing. I wasn’t comfortable doing daily updates at all. I also felt like I was posting 100 day project posts in the place of my knitting posts on Instagram. The knitting and crochet community on Instagram is so supportive and I missed interacting with them.

 I thought about quitting. Then I thought about how I already told everyone that I was doing this. I thought about how embarrassed I would be to suddenly stop posting updates. I got bored reading Bird by Bird. The main reason I finished Bird by Bird was because I already told everyone on Instagram that I was reading it. Then I think, is that a good reason to do this, to do anything?  In the end, I decided to shelve the project. I quietly stopped posting updates. I am not sure anyone noticed. Honestly, I was relieved when I stopped. I realized that I am not comfortable posting what I will do and would rather post an update after I finished. I also learned that I don’t want to get caught up in the fear of , “what will people think?” I don’t want to be afraid to change course because of that.  I like to write and want to build a regular writing practice but I also have realized I want to keep the daily process private and don’t want to write daily Instagram posts about it. 

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The Good and Bad Sides of Social Media

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One topic I would like to write about on occasion is the good and bad sides of social media. I am fascinated by social media. I have used Twitter and Facebook since 2009 and Instagram since 2015. I have seen both good and bad sides to social media. In recent years I feel like I am seeing more and more online harassment and that really bothers me. Leslie Jones and Anne Wheaton have both faced horrible harassment on Twitter. After watching what Leslie Jones went through, I almost deleted my Twitter account. Anne Wheaton stayed away from Twitter for several months because of the harassment. Here is a blog post she wrote about that.  Here is an article that outlines the harassment Leslie Jones received. I have also seen other women on Twitter attacked viciously for posting an opinion. It is easy to get misinterpreted on social media because it is very hard to read intent. I have seen some terrible misunderstandings and fights from this issue.

On the positive side, I have also received good advice and met some lovely people on social media. I regularly chat with people I consider to be friends on Twitter and Instagram. On social media, it is much easier to see different points of view. I follow people from around the world on both Twitter and Instagram. Hearing other points of view has expanded my horizons and enabled me to hear viewpoints I wouldn’t hear in my everyday life. I learned most of what I know about knitting and crochet from Ravelry. I found most of my blogging advice from people I follow on Twitter or Ravelry Forums.

Social media hasn’t been around that long and I am fascinated by how much it has changed things. Before social media, the main way to keep up with people was phone calls, in person meetings and email. It was a lot easier to fall out of touch with someone. Now you can easily find old classmates from years ago and know what is going on in their everyday lives. It also fascinates me how quickly information moves these days. If you are on Twitter you can see a big news story unfold in real time. You can see responses in real time by people at the event. Thanks to the internet I can interact with people all over the world. On Ravelry, I have chatted with people in several countries and discussed how their customs are different than American customs. That type of conversation was much harder to come by before the advent of social media. On Instagram, I once watched a live video of a lamb being born in Iceland while I was in Washington State; that is incredible when you think about it.