If you are one of my regular readers, you may have noticed that it’s been a very long time since any of my posts contained anything remotely sardonic and witty.  I miss that.  Has all of the seriousness I’ve uncovered on Facebook had this effect on me?  I’ve also noticed that I’m not writing as much.  Rut ro!!!

I’m still a relative newbie to Facebook.  It’s been an adventure to see how many new pages I can find each and every day.  I’m immersed in the animal-related causes: rescues and shelters, advocate groups, fellow authors.  And the list keeps growing.  But as I read the never-ending daily (hourly, actually) stream of urgent pleas to help animals in need, articles and videos intended to tear your heart out, I’m drawn in to try to help.  Of course, that’s the idea!  I’m a sucker when it comes to the animals.  However, I’m finding that I’m spending way too much time on Facebook and worst of all, I’m losing my sense of humor due to all of the misery out there that I am now exposed to.

I was listening to a story on NPR as I was driving to one of my book signings over the weekend. The story was called Digital Overload: Your Brain on Gadgets.  I think they were talking about me.  I can’t stay away from email, Facebook and generally searching the Net.  Oh yes, I’ll take a “break” and play an on-line game here and there.  But according to the story, our brains need a complete break from the computer- and the cell phone and other technologies.  The buzz of your cell phone telling you that you have a new message is like a tiny jolt of adrenaline, keeping us in heightened state of anticipation.  The story advocates a weekend break from it all.  Our brains, and bodies, need rest.

I know that I’m overloaded, not just from too much email and Facebook but from the vast amount of information about animals in need being posted on Facebook.  So I made some decisions:  Limit my time on Facebook each day, take a day off from the computer each week, and sadly I had to “unfriend” some Facebook pages that were making me just too sad with the constant barrage of neediness.  I know that  I cannot solve all of the problems  so I will only focus on what I can do.  That is, concentrate on the issue of puppy mills.  That’s my niche for now and if I work hard with just that, then maybe I can make a difference instead of spreading myself too depressingly thin.

Okay, when I’m not on Facebook I plan on watching lots of I Love Lucy and Three Stooges, take plenty of walks outside and read funny books.  Send me your suggestions for rediscovering our funny bones!  I’m planning my next book which I intend to be the humorous side of dog training.  I think I’m in real trouble if I don’t lighten up!

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