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How To Deal With Going Off Line For A Week

http://donnamerrilltribe.comBloggers know how it is.  We are on line every day.  Blogging, chatting it up on social sites, and of course, running the marketing end of our business. 

 

We get so caught up in our 2-dimensional world, that abandoning it for several days can create a bit of anxiety.

If you are like me, highly disciplined with your time and work… going offline for several days can make you feel a bit of a disconnect.  

 

This is exactly what happened to me last week.  

Right in the middle of a bazillion things “can’t wait” things to do, I needed to put everything on hold in order to attend my step-daughter’s wedding.

And it was a four day event!  Now, that’s some serious disconnect time for a blogger.

Nonetheless, I decided to be totally unplugged while I was there.

 

After all, there were family members from all over the U.S. meeting in a remote, mountain top wedding lodge.  Plus, I never even met the groom’s side of the family and wanted to get to know them.   In all, there were 250 people I needed to shmooze with.  I left my computer home, took the phone with me, and promised myself not to do any business. I totally immersed myself in real life instead of my 2-dimensional virtual one.

 

It took us 6 hours to ride there, and all I could think of was… darn…  If I had my laptop, I could be writing something.  What if I don’t answer people who need help?  My mind was full of my business.  

 

So here are some ways I got over the “what if’s”  the “OMG, I have to answer comments on my blog and respond to Facebook PM’s.”

 

    • Every time my mind went into these “What ifs” I repeated to myself “this is a business decision and it’s OK.”  I must have said it a thousand times – lol

 

    • Self Talk:  Whenever I thought of business, I used a lot of self talk.  This involves internalizing soothing messages to that reinforce the fact that “Everything will be fine.  I’ve done it before and I can do it again”.

 

  • Then I used my little affirmations:

      • “I Deserve!” I repeated to myself that I deserve a little Rest & Relaxation.

     

      • “Stay in the moment”… This is a time of joy and celebration.  Be in it.

     

 

There were so many issues to contend with that I seldom think of when I’m in my blogging world.

 

    • Sleep.  Now, when you are with so many people, breakfast is served a little earlier than my normal schedule.  So I made sure I cut off the chat and get to my hotel room to get the proper rest.  This is real departure for me, since I’ll commonly be up until 2 or 3 in the morning talking with people on Facebook from across the world.

 

    • Water.  This was the most important thing of all.  Stuck on a mountain top at a large resort, I knew I wouldn’t be finding much food I could eat (I’m pretty fussy).  Yes I brought my own goodie bag, but there is so much one can do.  So water became more important to me than it usually is.  I drank water to cleanse myself from all the prepared foods that just couldn’t be avoided.

 

 

Meeting the new family members was great.  

Family members

 

But it did involve a fair amount of cocktail chatter, which is something I rarely get involved in.  

 

It was a very long time since I had a Tangueray and Tonic.  Yes, the drinks were watered down, but I didn’t consider the fact that Tonic water was loaded with sugar, plus a fair amount of sodium.  This is where I ran into trouble. 

 

I woke up the next morning with puffy eyes and swollen feet!   OMG… how the heck was I gonna fit into my high heel shoes?  What about those puffs?   Luckily there was a spa on premises and I got a facial to un-puff!  Then stood in my room for an hour with my feet up!

 

This was so unlike my blogging world where I sip lemon water and black coffee, take a half hour break for a swim, then back to the keyboard.

 

I was in a strange, unfamiliar world.

 

Ready, Set, Go.  The festivities were on.  There was not one single thing that day I could consume –  wedding food always sucks!  I mean, it was “good”, but so unlike the simple diet of steamed veggies and whole grains that dominate my typical daily diet.  So, I ate bread and water for the most part.  Sort of a jailhouse diet in a plus resort… lol.

 

I was tempted to sit at the computer in the lobby to quickly check in on my blog and my peeps.  But I stayed strong.  I restrained myself.  I just found another person I didn’t know – introduced myself and jumped into yet another great conversation.  Online or offline, that’s what I do!

 

Every time I was tempted to think about my blog, I switched gears.

 

Some nice things actually came out of that.

 

For instance, at one point of rather intense weakness, I resorted to getting a full body wrap at the spa and slipped away into never-never land!

 

So, the bottom line my blogging friends, is this.  There are many ways we can actually have a good time without checking into our online world.  

 

This little vacation from my computer reminded me of the importance of living “in the moment”, as they say, whether that means in real life or virtual adventures.  

 

And I sure was in the moment.  I had a fantastic time seeing my grandkids from across the U.S.  I got to play with one granddaughter, held the new one in my arms for the first time (she’s just a few months old), and simply became part of all the festivities.  

 

The funny lesson I learned about all this is that when you finally come back home, everything is still there.  Plus, I really did deserve a great time!  

 

Have you had similar experiences when you took time away from your business?  Were you anxious?  Or did you take your business with you and check into your blogging world on a regular basis?  Or…maybe, like me, you unplugged altogether.

 

I would appreciate you sharing your story in the comments below.

Blessings,

Donna

Donna Merrill
Donna is a well known blogger and creator of "Blogging Magic" - an intensive guide to blogging. "Blogging Magic" is for beginners who are trying to figure out how to bring their blogs to life with tons of visits, comments and social media interaction. It's even for advanced bloggers looking to reach new levels of authority and engagement with their audience.

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48 Responses to How To Deal With Going Off Line For A Week

  1. Susan Cooper
    Twitter:
    March 24, 2014 at 11:20 pm #

    OMG, can I relate. I’ve been involved with a two household consolidating. What that means is I am moving stuff from one place to another.. purging, sorting and packing then doing it again on the other end. What has forced me to do is to go offline for extended periods of time. I have to say I’ve been suffering from withdrawal symptoms… LOL. It has taught me that I need to find a balance I didn’t think I needed. 🙂 It is just as you said, nothing major happened, the world didn’t end and it was all still as it should be. 🙂
    Susan Cooper recently posted..Lucky Coin: StoryMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 25, 2014 at 1:05 pm #

      Hi Susan,

      I have been following your move on Facebook and know difficult it is. You know, even moving as a good thing is high on the stress list.

      But doing all that, and being a blogger…well, we have to find that balance. And yes…the world didn’t end and we are still here!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  2. Harleena Singh
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 12:59 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Lovely post indeed 🙂

    I think every blogger can relate to all that you wrote! I was nodding my head in agreement as I kept reading these lines because this is just what really happens with most of us whenever we leave for a little while or a break.

    We usually take a break when our kids have theirs and travel to my Dad or else take him along and visit and see a new place. But it does take us nearly 2-3 weeks to get back home, so that’s a big gap to be away from work. I usually carry my laptop with me and work early mornings or late night, while the rest of the time I’m with everyone – but I know it’s not the real holiday I’d love to have.

    Bloggers are humans too, and they certainly need a cut-off break from everything. I did that once when I went on a 3 day visit, and my thoughts were stuck on my blog, social media, and the online world! You are never free mentally I’d add, unless you make the effort to just let go and be in the moment, enjoy, and have fun.

    The best part is that when you return, agreed you have a lot of blogs to visit, comments to reply, notifications and messages to catch up on the social media, but taking things slow, you do manage to work with renewed energy and get it all done, isn’t it? Or perhaps your friends understand that you were away, so even if you don’t visit the pending blogs once or twice, they understand – that’s what friends are for 🙂

    Moreover, you feel you’ve missed out on much, but if you don’t put up a status update for 1-2-3 days or don’t reply to messages or notifications, or even comments for 3-4 days, no one really notices or misses you! I realized this, so now sometimes even if I take a dip from one odd social networks, it gives me time for doing my things without feeling guilty about it. I guess the choices at the end of the day are always in our hands, isn’t it?

    But that little break taught me a lesson not to carry work when I go, at least on short trips and I plan doing just that when I go in June this year – hope I remember my words!

    Congratulations for the wedding and it surely must be a great to meet everyone as these are only the occasions when everyone from near and far gathers together and has fun. Don’t worry – weddings our end also are a 5-6 day affair where we need to attend all the functions – morning, noon, and evening – so you can imagine our state where food is concerned! I usually drink lots of water beforehand and eat fruits before I leave so ones very selective about the food ones eat, which is all real YUM but one knows its not going to be good for us to have it for so many days!

    Thanks for sharing this with us, and I’m glad you had a nice time and are back again. Have a nice week ahead 🙂
    Harleena Singh recently posted..SYPS: Are You Facing These Family Problems in Your LifeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 25, 2014 at 1:08 pm #

      Hi Harleena,

      Thank you for this wonderful comment you have shared. Going away for a long time does require us taking our laptops. But when it is a few days and we want to enjoy every moment, we do need to unplug.

      I made that decision because I haven’t seen my grand kids that live three thousand miles away for 2 years. I wanted to savor every moment with them.

      I also wanted to get to know the family of the groom. Oh they were just wonderful people.

      It was a pleasure to be in the moment the whole time. But…as for the food, well, what can a vegetarian do? lol

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  3. Ashvini March 25, 2014 at 6:58 am #

    Hi Donna,

    Exactly the right kind of post as I am returning after a long gap. I was out of action since last november as I developed medical complications. I was posting very less, even my business support was down in dumps. I had a few bad experiences. But fortunately people are very understanding and the issues got resolved.
    I think the anxiety is ever present. When I wake up, the first thing I would look at is my mobile and the notifications on it. I don’t think it is good but I can’t help it ;). I am planning to get more organized and make changes to my life so that hopefully I am not out of action for so long.
    Have a great day 🙂

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 25, 2014 at 4:19 pm #

      Hi Ashvini,

      Sorry for all the stuff you have gone through. I hope this finds you feeling better.

      Yes, people are so understanding. We always need to remember that. But that anxious feeling sometimes comes over us.

      What I learned from this experience is to unplug more often. Maybe two to three days and just be!

      I look back now and it gave me a new perspective and more balance.

      Hope all is well,

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  4. Bren
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 11:54 am #

    Donnna, I’m so glad you were able to unplug and enjoy the finer things in life….Family! Sometimes we have to unplug in order to keep our sanity, tend to more important issues, or just spend quality time with family.

    I unplug sometimes for a night or a day on the weekend to spend time with the family and I have to admit, although I do miss talking to some of my fav bloggy friends, it’s really nice to not worry about social media and my blog for awhile. It’s rather refreshing for me. 🙂

    Thank you so much for sharing a part of you personal life with us.
    Bren recently posted..Let Your Twitter Share Button Help You to Gain Recognition!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 25, 2014 at 4:27 pm #

      Hi Bren,

      I shared this because it happens to us all. People get anxious, frustrated, and worse, they take their phones with them and miss out on quality time.

      Yes, I was anxious a bit, but once I got going, it was the BEST! I had the phone with me for emergencies but that’s it. By the time I got home, I just called back one person at a time.

      Phew…now I’m in full balance and want to do it again!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  5. Jennifer Kennedy March 25, 2014 at 11:58 am #

    I’ve definitely been there, too! In December, I took a three week vacation to Argentina! When I first left, I was very anxious that I would miss something, or someone wouldn’t get a response from me, or insert terrible event here. After a day or so, I quickly got over it and realized that I deserved being there and I wanted to focus all of my attention on learning about the culture and seeing the sites.

    With that said, I did prepare for my trip in advance to make it much easier: I set up my autoresponder to say I was going to be out of town and I loaded up two weeks of blog posts to go out automatically! Both of those helped ease my mind and allowed me to live in the moment!

    Thanks for sharing your story. Seems like you had a grand time with family!!
    Jennifer Kennedy recently posted..2 Ridiculously Simple Steps to Find Out What Learners WantMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 10:44 am #

      Hi Jennifer,

      Thanks for sharing your experience! I did have things prepared, but was getting anxious a bit.

      I kept on repeating “I deserve” on the trip and finally came to a place in my mind to just relax and enjoy.

      I often “unplug” during the day for the gym, dinner, etc. But now I have conditioned myself to be more balanced.

      And a good time was had by all!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  6. William Butler
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 4:13 pm #

    Donna,
    I’m proud of you for taking time to do what was important to you.

    I think we need to place people first all the time. This is also great business (and blogging) practice. You were wise to disengage for a week.
    The world is still rotating on it’s perfect 23 degrees, isn’t it?

    Regardless, you got to experience new people. You also created future memories in those moments. How often do you get to do that with your blog?

    My daughter is getting married in September. It’s going to be AWESOME!

    Blessings!!
    Bill
    William Butler recently posted..Animal Wisdom: Leadership You Can Live ByMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 10:55 am #

      Hi Bill,

      Congratulations on your daughter’s wedding. Yes it will be AWESOME!

      Taking time out taught me so much. Making that decision and focusing on family and new friends was an experience not to be missed.

      Because there were no distractions, I immersed myself for 4 days without even looking at my phone! Heck, there was no time to at all!

      I did learn a good lesson. Take more breaks!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  7. Sylviane Nuccio
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    Hi Doanna,

    So happy for you that you had a great time. Thanks for giving us all the details.

    I had to laugh when I read about your food problems. In a lot of ways you reminded me of my mother who was so used to her own natural food that every time she ate as much as a cookie from a store she’d get sick. I am a bit like that too, even though not as much as my mom and you 🙂 It’s that when the body is used to natural stuff it doesn’t take anything else well.

    As I can see by what you’re saying here and the pictures I saw on facebook it seems that you had a great time and you guys looked gorgeous. I didn’t see any puffy eyes at all 🙂

    Thanks for sharing your trip!
    Sylviane Nuccio recently posted..5 Huge Reasons Why You Should Blog In A Niche You Know And LikeMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 10:59 am #

      Hi Sylviane,

      Yes, it was a food problem because I’m not used to processed or salt in my food. But I survived! lol

      I did have a great time after self talk along the way, and allowed myself not to think of business.

      Now, I’m balanced again. Because of this, I’m going to do it more often.

      I learned a big lesson and will put it into action.

      BTW you didn’t see puffy eyes because I put my glasses on, but there were bubbles under my eyes from the tonic water which contained salt. Thank God there was a spa on the premises.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  8. Arleen
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:13 pm #

    Donna- You do deserve some time for yourself. At first it was hard for me to go away and not drag the business with me. Last month my husband’s mother died and we were going to California for my sister’s birthday. After a short visit we headed to Arizona for the funeral. Well we were so busy going through papers that dated back to 1957 and earlier, making funeral arrangements, and visiting people I didn’t have time to think of my business. On the flight home, I thought my payments to the suppliers were going to be late, I couldn’t write my usual blog, and would my customers be upset I was not around. The funny thing is my business, bills, and my blogging community was still all there. What I learned is that sometimes we need to walk away from our business and it is OK. Life is short and we all must live in the moment. You made memories on your trip you will never forget.
    Arleen recently posted..What’s in Memorable Logos?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 11:09 am #

      Hi Arleen,

      So sorry for your loss. Things do get hectic and life does go on. But it is true that we “deserve” time away.

      Everything goes back to normal when we get back. What’s the use of stressing? It doesn’t do anything!

      I learned my lesson and now I’m more comfortable unplugging for a time off.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  9. Adrienne
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 6:51 pm #

    Hey Donna,

    I’m very proud of you and bravo for totally unplugging. I’ve yet to do that myself even over the Christmas holidays I did get online but I just didn’t blog or visit a lot of blogs.

    I took a couple vacations last May but took my laptop with me both trips. Because they were both family outings I couldn’t stay online all the time but I also didn’t freak out or panic either because I deserved that time away to spend with family. If we were running late and I had intended to get online at a specific time I didn’t stress out about it.

    Everyone knew I was going to be gone and away even though they were both over a weekend. Okay a few week days in there too but for the most part weekend.

    We all deserve a break or I think we’d stress ourselves out even more. I’m so glad you had fun and got to spend time with family, new and old and of course your grandbabies. Welcome home though, always good to have you back.

    ~Adrienne
    Adrienne recently posted..How To Build A Rockin Successful Email ListMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 11:14 am #

      Hi Adrienne,

      I usually take my laptop with me when I go on a trip, just to keep up. But this time I made the decision that I was not going to do it.

      There were times when I was off line, like when my dog passed..That threw me off for a while. But I did have my computer on once in a while.

      Being totally unplugged felt like I left home without my underwear lol.

      But it sure did me good girl. Just like any other life lesson, I found that I can relax and not think of anything else but the moment!

      Oh those grandbabies….My granddaughter stuck to me like glue the entire time. She is a girly girl and just loves to play dress up since she was 2. I dressed her up in my high heels and fur wrap. She had so much fun. I miss her already!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  10. Barbara Charles
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    This post is right on time. I’ve just gone through a few weeks of ‘being away.’ And I worried about it constantly. But I also had to ‘live in the moment’ and am still trying when I get away from my blogging. I wrote an article on getting back into good business mode because that’s what I feel is difficult right now.

    I love that you used ‘distractions’ like full body wrap (YES!) to keep grounded. I need one of those too! 😉

    Very strange – we are on the same page. 🙂 Glad you had a good time and thanks for this wonderful posts. Sometimes we have to get grounded in the moment for sure. I will try to do more of that.

    Take care,
    Barbara
    Barbara Charles recently posted..How To Create Good Business Habits In 30 DaysMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 11:18 am #

      Hi Barbara,

      I read your post and it is fantastic! Your time away sure gave you a new perspective. Your business plan for the next 30 days will change up your entire business….for the good!

      I know how stressed you were but you needed time for YOU. A full body wrap is something that will make you feel special and alive! Go for it!

      We are on the same page girl, but the thing is…everyone is still here!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  11. Geri Richmond
    Twitter:
    March 25, 2014 at 10:47 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I’m really happy that you had a good time and were able to shut off the business part of you for a while.

    I know how difficult it is to do what you did. Sometimes my husband and I will go on a 4 day getaway but, I always bring my computer.

    My husband will give me that look as if to say, you are not really going to bring that computer are you?

    Now, I’m stressing because friends of ours had invited us to their timeshare in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic, for a 2 week vacation.

    Thank goodness it’s not until the middle of October so, I have time to prepare, I’m already worrying about how much time I will devote to business every day.

    If you are like me, two weeks away from your business seems like a lifetime. I’m sure I will manage but, it sure gets me thinking about how much I will have to delegate to others.

    It seems like a long way off but, the way this year is flying by already, I’m afraid it will be here before I am ready.

    Thanks for sharing your story with us because I needed to hear that.

    Talk soon and have a wonderful week! 🙂

    Geri
    Geri Richmond recently posted..Build Your List With An Uncomplicated Landing PageMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 26, 2014 at 11:29 am #

      Hi Geri,

      Just get your ducks in a row. Then make sure you announce to all your followers that you will be away for two weeks. Post it everywhere so people can see it on your social sites.

      I would start in September posting how you are getting ready for your trip and will be off line.

      People do respond to that. Then fly away girl. Leave that computer behind you.

      When you get back we will all be here!!!!!

      Learn from my experience and do anything not to stress!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  12. Sherman Smith March 26, 2014 at 2:22 am #

    Hey Donna,

    Despite the fact that you kept thinking about your business, it sounds like you had a lot of fun. You definitely deserve it! I know how hard it can get to not thinking about blogging, your online friends, and home business in general. Every time I go to Vegas, I have to bring my laptop to do some work. It’s tough to just let everything be and have fun, but you know sometimes we just have to do it. Our businesses is just a part of our lives. Sometimes we just got to let our hair down (although I don’t have any hair lol) and just live life to the fullest! Thanks for sharing and you have a great rest of the week!

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 27, 2014 at 9:58 am #

      Hi Sherman,

      I did learn a great lesson. I can now feel free to be totally un-plugged from the internet world and enjoy life as it is.

      In the past, I’ve taken my laptop with me on vacations, long trips, etc.

      But being totally unplugged I felt a sense of accomplishment. I’m not one that carries my phone around when I’m on a walk or out to dinner. But spending a long time without it, well, it sure did teach me that I can have a clear mind and enjoy the moment.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  13. Sue Price
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 4:13 am #

    Hi Donna

    Well done for remaining unplugged. I think we all need to do that. I related to every feeling you described though.

    Even before blogging – way before actually my daughter said something to me that was a wake up call. Ivan, our daughter Shannon and I were in Fiji on a week vacation. The timing was not so good as we were in a very busy business. We had decided to go though as we were feeling burnt out.

    We were staying on a small island and there was no telephone, no television and definitely no computers. So the first days we played tennis, swam etc. Then a monsoon his and we were confined to our bure (not sure how to spell but those little hut looking things in the tropics). Anyway I was so uptight and we went to the dining area and someone had a computer and somehow had got online. Now I was drooling!!!

    Shannon picked up on me (she was 11 at the time) and said “Mom why don’t you just go and ask him if you can use it? You are more interested in your computer and business than me. Our holidays are always like this”. She said it without anger just in a matter of fact tone. .. and I got it!

    So I since have aimed to be where I am. If that makes sense. I do not always succeed though for all the reasons and thoughts you have described.

    Great post Donna and I cannot wait to see more pics.

    Sue
    Sue Price recently posted..Internet Traffic : Do You Need More?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 27, 2014 at 10:02 am #

      Hi Sue,

      What a wonderful share you have given on this comment section. It is so true…words from our children really do stick and give us a wake up call.

      Lessons are always learned about ourselves. This was one of them. You know me well enough that I don’t carry around my IPhone when I’m out and about. I do have a habit of unplugging every day to live my life!

      But going away for a long time without any connections can be a harrowing experience. Your story taught me a great lesson and I thank you.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  14. Lisa
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 5:04 am #

    Donna, good for you! I’ve done it more often recently but only a day at a time, not for a whole week. It must be very refreshing to go that long. It was great that you did NOT take your laptop or you would have been so tempted to turn it on! It sounds like you had a lot of fun too.
    It can really become an addiction checking your phone for updates and notifications. I think once you unplug for a length of time you can really just relax. It also takes us back to a simplier time in life.
    Lisa recently posted..Transferring Branding Initiatives to an Automated Marketing CompanyMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 27, 2014 at 10:41 am #

      Hi Lisa,

      It sure did take me back to that simplier time in life! I usually carry my laptop, especially if I’m gone for a week.

      As I got over the anxiety and put myself in the moment of each day, I did learn a huge lesson. Business goes on!

      When we are sole proprietors of our business, we become used to doing just about everything. But, as a businesswoman, I do need my time.

      I did learn a lesson: I’m worth it! lol

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  15. Glenn Shepherd
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 8:04 am #

    Hi Donna,

    I can relate to this because just yesterday my Internet went down for about half a day. Half a day!! But I found myself pacing around like a caged tiger before I finally figured out what was wrong (without the help of my ISP). It was certainly unsettling, even for such a short period of time.

    I think there are maybe two types of feeling ‘disconnected’ – the one that I experienced yesterday because of knowing that there were things that I had to do, couldn’t do and could be potentially damaging if they weren’t done. The other is, I think, more like the one you’ve related. We can get so used to be online, connected, checking up on things and so on that it can become quite addictive and we can even become almost obsessive over it.

    It should go without saying that we shouldn’t just drop everything when there are important tasks that must be taken care of, but it is important to take some time out once in a while and poke our heads up away from our computers. So long as we have everything in place that should be then things will usually tick over just fine without us and will be there waiting for us when we return.

    On a smaller scale, something that I try to do is take regular breaks during the day. It can be so easy to just drive ahead and, before we know it, we’ve spent a solid few hours slogging away. But I think it’s good to get into the routine of taking those regular breaks and doing something as a kind of reward, even if it’s just walking around the garden for a few minutes (weather permitting!)

    I’m glad you had a good time away. Thanks for sharing your experience. 🙂

    ~Glenn
    Glenn Shepherd recently posted..The Great Traffic IllusionMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 27, 2014 at 10:57 am #

      Hi Glenn!

      I do take time out every day for a few hours to get to the gym, or play with my dogs outside (even in the snow here) That is a regular habit of mine.

      But I know my laptop is there, my IPhone is in it’s place. That sense of security allows me to do this.

      But when it comes to making the decision to be away for a week, it is quite the different story. Anxiety levels rise, I start to wonder if I’m missing something, etc.

      But, when all was said and done, I learned an important lesson. I’m addicted! Now I cannot live my life with any addictions, but got that AHA moment.

      So, from now on, I will take longer breaks! All I have to do is have my ducks in a row, announce to my friends and clients that I will be gone and Viola…

      The main reason we are all here is for freedom. So why not live it?

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  16. Kumar Gauraw
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 3:36 pm #

    Hi Donna,

    I can definitely relate. I just came back from a 4 week vacation to India when I was almost out for a month.

    And yes, I do know that feeling 🙂 I’ve been there…..

    But you know what, I think this is why they say, “Slow down to speed up”.

    I think you deserved this break after the hard work you and David put to launch your new product “Blogging Magic”. So, yes, a vacation well deserved!

    Anyways! Welcome back 🙂

    Regards,
    Kumar
    Kumar Gauraw recently posted..5 Reasons As An Entrepreneur, You Must Do Network MarketingMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 27, 2014 at 10:58 am #

      Hi Kumar,

      I like that saying “Slow down to speed up” My mind is now clear and yes, I’m speeding up the process!

      After putting up that product, a vacation was well deserved.

      Thanks!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  17. Marquita Herald
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 5:40 pm #

    Great share Donna. I’m planning an extended trip to the mainland this fall and have been struggling with the whole question of how to handle my blog while I’m away for 3 weeks. Part of the challenge is I also plan to use the time to write so I can’t really leave my computer at home. But I have been wanting to hire a virtual assistant for months now so it may finally be time to loosen a little of the controls. I figure I can write the articles ahead of time and she/he can take care of social media and comments. Sounds good anyway. 🙂
    Marquita Herald recently posted..Feel Like Something Is Missing In Your Life?My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 28, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

      Sounds like a good plan Marty!

      I just reached out for a VA myself. Working things out as I write. I think it’s a great idea because you have to be focused on your book and not be distracted by all the other things that go with blogging.

      It’s time!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  18. Jeanne Melanson
    Twitter:
    March 26, 2014 at 8:16 pm #

    I must confess. I bring my laptop with me when I go away. You know, for those trips to the cafe, or later at night when things wind down, or in between things. But I realize that it would really do me a lot of good to unplug. Maybe this summer, when the weather gets warmer … Thanks for sharing, Donna. Hats off to you!

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 28, 2014 at 1:32 pm #

      Hi Jeanne,

      I unplug every day for a few hours to catch some real life experiences. I had to push myself to do it, but it became a habit and I feel well balanced.

      But going away for a longer time was a difficult choice to make. I’m sure glad I did because I’ve learned a great lesson.

      I can do it! If it is a week or more, a VA can handle things for me as long as I put my ducks in a row.

      Ta Da

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  19. Monisha Kapur- 344pm
    Twitter:
    March 27, 2014 at 2:20 pm #

    Hi Donna

    Thanks for the reminder to Live in the Moment. It’s not easy, but like you said, it’s definitely needed!!

    – Monisha

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 28, 2014 at 1:33 pm #

      Hi Monisha,

      I know you well enough to tell you that yes, try to live in the moment without worry, without the what ifs’ and so on.

      You are getting there girlfriend!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  20. Mark
    Twitter:
    March 27, 2014 at 7:04 pm #

    Donna:

    It sounds like overall you really did enjoy yourself! And that’s what really counts!

    And why the heck shouldn’t you un whine every now and again!For sure your fabulous input was missed by all of your cyber space peeps!

    But as you mentioned, no one was going too far!

    But still in all, it’s great your back, and I was actually curious as to why I didn’t seeing posts being shared by you for those few days!

    But now your back! And it’s game on once again! Welcome home!
    Mark recently posted..Three Ways You Can Inexpensively Increase Your Market Share Now!My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 28, 2014 at 1:49 pm #

      Hi Mark,

      I did post up that I would be gone for the week, but how far can that go on a FB roll or a tweet? I told my groups that I was in I would be gone too.

      My decision to get away from cyber space took a lot of thought. But I decided to do so. With a little anxiety and some self talk to rid it, I was able to enjoy the magical moments.

      I shared this because we can get so addicted to being on line all the time, and forget that we are human, our clients will understand and everyone will be back when we get there.

      I love life lessons and this was a biggie for me!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Is Your Blog A Graveyard?My Profile

  21. Carol B
    Twitter:
    March 28, 2014 at 5:48 pm #

    I’ve completely unplugged once not that long ago. It wasn’t completely by choice – between a sudden death in the family, and my site crashing, I went off-line for two weeks. Then another two weeks of “half-on-line” as we brought my site back up. it was nerve-wracking to say the least! But I weathered the storm, and am ready to do it again. We are leaving on a family vacation for 10 days “off the grid” where I will be pretty much forced to let it go. I am writing ahead and will schedule publication of 2-3 blogs while I am away, but that’s about it. And since I’ve been through it once, I’m a bit calmer about it this time.

    I think we all need a little break, if for no other reason than to recharge and refresh.
    Carol B recently posted..Exploring Mayan Masterpieces – Belize Family Travel SeriesMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 31, 2014 at 3:34 pm #

      Hi Carol,

      Going through a sudden death in the family and having your site crash is a hard thing to cope with.

      But..you bounced back up. I think we all need to take time off so that when things like this happen to us, we can deal with the issues at hand, without the extra stress.

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Why Updating Your Blog Is ImportantMy Profile

  22. Emmanuel
    Twitter:
    March 30, 2014 at 8:38 am #

    There is of course no doubt that as a blogger, you always would love to be online and the least opposition kind of drives you crazy.

    In order to avoid being online always,I have moved from a smartphone to an ‘unsmartphone’. So if I am not behind my computer, it is all fun with friends without me having to check my email every now and then on my phone when enjoying my football matches.
    Emmanuel recently posted..Some Bloggers I can’t and won’t ever Forget.My Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      March 31, 2014 at 3:43 pm #

      Hi Emmanuel,

      I know what you mean by not using your phone. As a blogger, one can get crazy answering every tweet or Facebook bing on the phone!

      It is a wise move you have made to separate yourself from working and having fun. We all need a break!

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Why Updating Your Blog Is ImportantMy Profile

  23. Shivkumar
    Twitter:
    April 4, 2014 at 7:12 am #

    Hello,

    Almost every blogger face same situation as you have mention above. Blogger like me love to go offline with the friends and family.

    But sometime as a student leaving the online world and getting stuck in studies and project work which is again an indeed important for a student creates a big gap between the blog and us. Especially when he/she is the only person to look after their blog.

    By the ways, congratulation for you step-daughter’s wedding. 🙂
    Shivkumar recently posted..How to install and customize WordPress offline on localhost?My Profile

  24. Donna Merrill
    Twitter:
    April 5, 2014 at 12:34 pm #

    Hi Shivkumar,

    I’m sure as a student, one has to leave the on line world very often. It is all a matter of priorities. I so admire students that are running blogs and businesses in the online world.

    I learn so much from you and so many others.

    Thanks you,

    -Donna
    Donna Merrill recently posted..Why Updating Your Blog Is ImportantMy Profile

  25. Sue Bride
    Twitter:
    April 6, 2014 at 7:32 pm #

    When I am at home I find it hard to tear myself away from the computer unless I am tired and occasionally when I am frustrated and know that a break is needed to come back to a problem with a fresh mind.

    When away I welcome the break and have no problems switching off. I take my laptop with recorded videos installed and will check my email via cell phone, but only if I am expecting something important. I love catching up with reading, spending time with the family, exploring the area and sitting in cafes watching the world go by.

    I think it is uninterrupted quality family time that prevents me from feeling guilty and thinking about what I need to do. I tend to come back more focused on what is important and get less sidetracked.
    Sue Bride recently posted..How To Encourage Pinterest PinningMy Profile

    • Donna Merrill
      Twitter:
      May 5, 2014 at 11:26 am #

      Woops…Didn’t see you here Sue!

      Sorry about that…Better late than never!

      Looks like you have it all balanced out Sue. It is so important to take a break and watch the world go round. That’s how we can come back to business with new and fresh ideas.

      But of course, it is always Family First! Spending quality time with your family is so important and it is great that you do. Otherwise, you will be so distracted tearing yourself apart.

      You have been blogging for such a long time, and using it wisely. Woo Hoo

      -Donna
      Donna Merrill recently posted..Have You Come A Long Way, Blogger?My Profile

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