We’re alive in the greatest time in history. We have the most advanced technology that connects people all over the world at the touch of just a few icons. This very blog has been viewed all over the world thanks to this technology. I truly enjoy the connectivity of social media, because it has made the world smaller; giving me access to friends and family miles away and keeping them close. But as powerful as a tool technology is, there comes a time when one must disconnect, even if it is for a season, in order to really think clearly.
It is only human nature to be influenced by our surroundings, the people in our lives, the things we read, see and hear. It’s just simply a fact that all of us are the products of the things that influence us. Be it great or slight, everyone is influenced by something or someone else. So with all the noise in our world today, whether it’s media, or physical people, it is increasingly difficult to think clearly for yourself (or even to hear from God).
There are literally hundreds maybe even thousands of voices and influences competing for you attention right now. While there are plenty of valuable things to give your attention to (ahem, like derekjmurphy.com), it is far more valuable to shut out all those voices. Here are 5 benefits of disconnecting for a season:
- You get to process. Think about everything that showed up on your timeline today. Some of it is garbage, some of it is entertaining, some of it is uplifting , and some of it is instructional. If you continue to mindlessly scroll, you will forget what you saw. I know I’ve done it: seen something interesting, want to come back to it but can’t find it. If you don’t stop and process, good things will get lost in the shuffle.
- You can think clearly. Being able to process this information and deciphering what’s valuable or not, leaves you with the ability to apply what you will, without imposing influences. Marketing agencies don’t necessarily want you to think clearly. They would rather you respond impulsively. When you don’t think things through, you end up wasting time and resources that would have been better used elsewhere.
- You redeem you time. Time is precious. It is the one thing that you can never really save, but can easily waste. All of us, who are especially connected to social media, have wasted plenty of time. Hours have been lost, and for some days have been blown. But when you disconnect, you find that you are far more productive when you are focused, and not distracted. Even though you really aren’t getting any time back, you make the best of the time you DO have.
- You get to miss it. This one is tricky and can become a catch 22. But when you are away from an influence, or a voice for a while, you tend to come back with fresh eyes and ears. It’s the old adage: absence makes the heart grow fonder. When you do return, the experience will actually mean something, and perhaps you will better filter what is good.
- You will make a discovery. I am a firm believer that God will allow us to feel disconnected, sometimes, in order to get our attention. You don’t even have to be a Jesus follower for this principle. But when you feel disconnected, I believe you are on the brink of a revelation that will ultimately change your life. God will reveal something about Himself, or even about you that will help you practically or creatively in the future. Many of us were ill prepared for divinely appointed opportunities, just simply because we didn’t take advantage of these disconnected of moments.
So, let me encourage you to set aside some time, everyday, every week, or every month to disconnect. In the same token, don’t ignore those times when you feel disconnected, even when you truly aren’t. I am almost willing to bet the whole farm that you will see immediate benefits by doing so. (Check out “Hypnotize” for even more insight)
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