Filming my life, one second at a time

Long, long ago, I spent the evening of 31 December 2019 with my family. As midnight approached, we all stared at the clock, preparing to count down to the start of the new decade.

My brother’s girlfriend grabbed her phone. She wanted to film the countdown – not the whole thing, just the last second.

The second, she explained, was for an app called 1 Second Everyday. 1SE is essentially a video journal. It gives you a calendar to populate with individual one-second videos, then compiles them into a montage. It lets you document your life, not for social media, but for your own satisfaction and reflection. She showed us her 2019 video – fragments of her reading books, meeting friends, running for the bus – all together building a vision of her everyday life.

This sounded like fun to me. I didn’t know if I’d stick with it, but I downloaded the app anyway, then went outside and filmed one second of fireworks.

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New Year, new me?

I am a bit of a New Year’s girl. I’m not talking about New Year’s Eve, with the idea of parties, champagne and midnight kisses (or, more accurately for me, some board games). I mean the first day of the year, where you have a fresh 365 (or 366) days to look forward to. It feels like a nice blank slate. A fresh start. All the stress and buzz of the holidays has passed, and I feel like I can settle into a groove again.

But my favourite part of the New Year has always been New Year’s resolutions. “This is it,” I tell myself. “This is the year when I will really sort my shit out.” For the self-improvement addict, New Years is kind of like Halloween – who do I want to go as this year? Maybe I’ll pretend to be someone who does life drawing, works out regularly, and has a consistent morning routine. If I wear the costume long enough, I may become it.

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What’s cheering me up right now

Oh yeah, I have a blog. As you might have guessed from my drop in posting, the last few months have not been so great. A lot of shitty things have been going on and unfortunately that currently shows no signs of stopping.

But I don’t really want to write about any of that right now, and one of the reasons I started this blog was to have a space to just geek out about stuff I’m enjoying, so let’s talk about some of that instead.

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Attempting an internet detox for my brain

August has not been my best month ever. It definitely wasn’t the worst either, but I had a lot of days where I honestly felt pretty crappy. The land of low moods, anxiety, stress and self-doubt.

When I feel like this, I notice myself slipping into some unhealthy internet patterns. Things like:

  • checking the news over and over
  • scrolling through Twitter for ages
  • binge-watching YouTube for hours at a time

These habits are part cause and part effect. I definitely don’t think they’re entirely to blame for my rubbish moods, but the first two can spark or exacerbate them. While YouTube doesn’t tend to make me feel more negative, it often distracts me from doing something that would actually help me out. And when I’m feeling down, it’s a lot harder to exercise discipline around using them.

I want to try to break free of this cycle, so for September I’m going to attempt a sort of internet detox. I am not doing this to boost productivity or anything like that (you know my thoughts on this). But I am hoping it’ll help with my general wellbeing.

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Thoughts on 6 months of blogging

I’ve been writing this blog for more than half a year now. This will be the 29th post I publish.

Starting a blog in 2019 feels a bit like signing up for MySpace or posting on Usenet or some other dinosaurish internet activity. Really, I should have started a YouTube channel or tried to make it big on TikTok. Nowadays, if you want to spend hours and hours editing yourself into audience-friendly content, video seems to be the way to do it.

But, anachronistic as it may be, I’m happy I started this blog. It’s been a positive thing in my life and I’m excited to keep at it.

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