Ashley E. Kingsley

Why Social Media Drives Me

In Uncategorized on September 16, 2009 at 1:18 am

Multi taskI was enjoying a day at the Rockies game  doing my usual; multi-tasking. I was watching my TWITTER stream, peering onto the game over my Blackberry, talking to my friend and husband and playing with the kids. Oh, yeah, I was drinking a beer too.  Amused as always with my Twitter stream, I realized it was time to put the phone down and get the kids packed up. They were done, it was the 7th inning.

I had my phone in my hand, baby strapped to the front of me, toddler walking next to me and hubby leading the way.  One quick stop into the loo was all I needed.  And, of course, I left my phone in the bathroom stall.  And the moral of this story – don’t leave your phone in the bathroom stall or someone will take it.  Well, that isn’t really the moral of the story, but a side note.

Within seconds my lifeline was gone. Sound dramatic?  My Twitter stream, POOF!  My Facebook access lost. My phone book, buh-bye. My PHONE, gawn. GAWN!  I panicked and then I became interested in my own physiological meltdown. Well, it wasn’t really a meltdown, but I was having side-effects, seriously.  I felt, lost and dazed.  No, I am not kidding.

I decided, after I talked to the insurance company (yes, I always insure my phones) that since I wouldn’t see a replacement for 48 hours give or take, due to the Holiday weekend that I would experiment with my “need” to always be connected.


I couldn’t believe how ridiculous it was how disconnected I was feeling.  A phone, a blackberry…  some call it an extra appendage… it just didn’t make sense to me why I was feeling so out of sorts?  What is so important ‘out there’ that I was actually missing?  I guessed, probably not much.  I couldn’t check my streams or my friends’ status updates, click through the news or see the latest baseball score.  Big deal, right?


I realized within the first few hours of loss that  my Blackberry had become a ‘tick.’ That’s right, a nervous, boredom, fill-the-time-or-empty-space-moments with noise – other people’s noise, ‘tick.’  It was shocking to me how much I missed clicking between Twitter and Facebook  to see updates, learn, engage and be part of the conversation. The need to be part of all of this, I discovered, drives me.

The need and DRIVE is:  Connectivity. Belonging. A way for me to experience others without having direct person-to-person contact.   This new discovery of mine was not surprising. What was surprising, however,  was how I felt when I didn’t have the option to just ‘connect’ instantaneously.  Isn’t everything, instant? Don’t we function on ‘instant’ now? I do and now I know how important it is to have access, anytime, anywhere.


I missed the feeds and status updates… and then… I kind of chilled.  Don’t get me wrong,  I did “wonder” what was going on when I wasn’t looking or connected.   I realized that time and appropriate USE of my Blackberry was what I might need to pay attention to. If I want to be connected, I could be connected – but I had to make some adjustments.  I hadn’t fully realized how much I was missing outside the stream. I started actually, um, driving my car, listening to NPR again and just being with myself, sans hyper-connectivity.  It was oddly, refreshing.  I took an OATH to stop texting, Tweeting, Facebooking and emailing while driving.  It seems soooo obvious…. I know.   YOU CAN TOO- HERE.  I HOPE YOU DO!


Being disconnected was interesting. I was thankful for the time I got to reflect which is something I am really thankful for. Re-connecting with self is so very important – equally as important as connecting outside of myself. -BALANCE-


I have learned that connectedness isn’t a bad thing. Somehow, I was feeling guilty for being *that girl* that is always Twittering or Facebooking. You know what?  Being part of the stream is important to me. Participating in the conversation is valuable to me.  Listening to others and learning from others is vital to me.  So the appendage stays.

I think using my appendage at more appropriate times is what matters. Maybe cool down on the triple-tasking, perhaps?

  1. I’ve also had issues with using my appendage at the appropriate time.

    I was thinking about Facebook and it’s like blog commenting for normal people.

  2. This happened to me just yesterday! Except that instead of losing my phone, I had a college reunion in a town not serviced by Sprint. I was looking at I’d have 12-15 WAKING HOURS of being unplugged.

    I go the tic. I had nothing to do while waiting for things to happen. But gradually, I began to enjoy LIVING the reunion rather than living to TWEET the reunion.

    All night I kept thinking, “dang, that would be a good tweet.”

    I love this: ‘I think using my appendage at more appropriate times is what matters.” Thank you for making me be aware that awareness is what I need.

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