Clean Slates, Post-Insta Hangovers, and Digital Minimalism

February 19, 2019

I haven’t read Cal Newport’s new book yet, but I am definitely going to. I haven’t decided whether I will order a print copy of read on Kindle. The latter seems ironic, but I am getting more reading done on screens lately. Probably because I need to get a new library membership!

Plus just look at that cover art!

I have to admit that after my Weekend of InstaStories, I have been picking up my phone far more than I used to and zombie-ing out on — of course — Instagram. What a fun app. But what an addictive app! And just as Newport states, there’s nothing inherently wrong with enjoying oneself on a fun app.

It’s just that you must consider what you may be not doing because you are instead on that app. Newport’s suggestion is to get rid of everything and then gradually add back. I will have to see if I can bring myself to take his advice — not sure after enjoying sharing the Stories with you all last weekend! But at the same time, my phone-centric behaviors in the aftermath have 100% proven him right.

All that said . . . I actually feel like I have entered a bit of a productivity renaissance recently. Perhaps it’s the clean slate effect of the move, or my magical HTC planner, or (more likely) having a baby toddler that now sleeps through the night and NO MORE PUMPING DURING THE DAY (though I still may bring that wretched thing on our weekend away. Still TBD).

I am certainly not hitting every goal I have set for myself, but the big ones each week are getting completed. I’m NOT behind at work (a place where I do not, for the record, spend much time on Instagram). I have been working out, reading, having quality time with the kids, enjoying the podcast, and posting more here.

So what is missing? Do I actually have time for all of the above PLUS an hour a day on Instagram?


And there is something to be said for just letting one’s mind rest and indulging in whatever sometimes.

But at the same time, I have other fun/for-me projects that I’d like to be doing more of (writing, family photo-related stuff, etc). I guess I just have to decide. I also would like to spend more time with Josh, but his hours recently have made that really hard. (I think this is temporary, but if not we are going to have to figure out how to fit in a weekly family night or I will have to suck it up and stay up past 10 more often! Something I’ve never been very good at . . .).

My Current To Be Read List:

  1. Finish Bad Blood by John Carreyrou
  2. Where The Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
  3. Brain on Fire (residency program book club!) by Susannah Cahalan
  4. Outer Order Inner Calm by Gretchen Rubin (yep, I pre-ordered!)
  5. Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport

(Not enough juicy novels on there. I am going to have to insert some between #3/4 and #4/5!)


  • Reply Parent Lightly Beth Cubbage March 10, 2019 at 7:04 pm

    I’m curious to know what you think of Digital Minimalism! I pre-ordered Outer Order, Inner Calm as well. Can’t wait! Right now I’m reading The One Thing but I admit that I took a break from it to read a fiction book. Like sassysparky I can’t do too much non-fiction in a row without giving my brain a break!

  • Reply Marie March 10, 2019 at 7:04 pm

    Great book list! I read both Bad Blood and Where the Crawdads Sing last year and loved them both. For juicy novels, how about One Day in December by Josie Silver?

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