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Screen Time doesn’t mean anything

The Mac operating system got an upgrade the other day: Catalina. It’s so cool; I feel like I got a new computer. One of the things I was hoping they’d implement – and maybe someone somewhere was reading my mind, because they did – is Screen Time. It was already on the iPhone; why not have it on the Macs as well?

However, I have recently reached the conclusion that Screen Time doesn’t mean a whole lot. Or anything, really. Every time I check it, it always seems to increase. And, it can become a negative obsession.

It seems that older the generations’ – especially Baby Boomers – favorite pastime is to pick on millennials for whatever we do. We can’t ever do anything right in their eyes. As far as they’re concerned, all we do is complain. This includes commentary on how we use technology.

My mother’s favorite thing to say is that I’m addicted to my phone. If I got rid of my phone, all the problems in my life would be solved somehow. So, for a while recently, I was obsessed with my Screen Time numbers. Constantly checking to see where I was at, and chastising myself when it went up. It wasn’t healthy at all.

I was so obsessed with how much I was using my phone that the things I was using it for – mainly podcasts and music – no longer gave me the same enjoyment. Everything I loved about it became a burden. And it’s not exactly the best indicator of how much people use their phones if the numbers constantly increase, is it? It’s more of a technological guilt trip than anything else.

I wish people could understand that technology isn’t bad. Not every streaming service is a waste of money, even though there’s too many to count at this point. Apple Music is amazing because a lot of music inspires my writing. It’s nice to have access to almost everything at my fingertips.

What matters is how people use technology. And I don’t know where my creativity would be without it, so people need to keep quiet and let me do my thing.

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Creativity v Suggestion

This post was inspired by something my mother said. I don’t remember it verbatim, but it was something like this:

I had an idea of something for you to blog about, but I can’t remember it.

If she had remembered it, I’m sure I would’ve listened respectfully and at least considered the idea. All the same, it really ticked me off.

You may or may not have noticed, but I took a few days off from blogging because I was close – dangerously close – to running out of topics and having to wrack my brain for something to write about and post for that day, as opposed to having the posts scheduled in advance.

After hitting the reset button for a few days, I’ve thought of more ideas to discuss in my post, this being one of them: If someone tells me what to write, it won’t be as exciting as if I had thought of the idea myself. If I think of an idea myself, it’s exciting, so I will put more time and effort into it because I care about it.

Another suggestion that I’ve received is that I should blog about things related to Cerebral Palsy or just generally blog about things that other people are interested in. It’s sort of the same issue as I described above. Plus, if I’m always writing for a specific audience, it takes away from my creativity and ability to expand on an established format. Because if I write for a specific audience, that audience is going to expect a certain product (format and content of a blog post). If I were to break from said hypothetical product, I don’t think it would go over well.

I should probably add that I don’t blog about my disability because I don’t want it to define me. I’ve never let it define me. I’ve mentioned it in passing on this blog before, but that’s because I’m trying to talk about something related to it.

I’m happy with the audience I do have here, because it means that people are interested in my topics and what I have to say about them. So, thank you.

Reading

Occasionally, my mother will show me a newspaper article she thinks I should read. sometimes the topic is actually interesting, but most of the time it’s not. When it is interesting but I don’t read it right away, she says I’m not interested. I could go on, but I’ll spare you the drama. Because what I’m trying to get at is that people might mean well when they suggest reading material or topics to write about, but if I’m not interested, it isn’t going to happen.