14 February 2012

Mark All As Read

I love catching up on my favourite blogs and news articles, usually with Google Reader. Whether I'm reading about someone's writing journey, craft tips, or a whole lot of stuff unrelated to writing, I like catching up on the world outside my own.

Confession time: I'm a little bit obsessive about reading every single post, even by people I don't know anything about (but their blog sounded interesting). As I read I like to see the "unread" number decrease until their blog name is completely cleared away. Sometimes I don't get time to keep up to date... well let's be honest, nearly every day I have a back-log. I keep finding interesting blogs to subscribe to. And sometimes, if it really gets too much, it need to "mark all as read".

But I really don't want to. I want to at least see the subject line of each and every post. I think I might be missing out on something great if I don't at least look. Perhaps I'll want to comment, or I might learn something new, or I might laugh.

Is it just me?

At the end of the month (the 26th, to be precise), I'm going on holiday for 4 weeks. There is no way I'll be able to catch up, so I will have to mark unread items as read. The very thought of it makes me uncomfortable, but it's inevitable. And I know once you click that button, it's an incredibly cleansing feeling. As if I've just taken a little weight off my shoulders. I don't have to read everything, even if I like to.

It'll be the same for all the actual mail that piles up while we're away... I need to prioritise what I'll read and throw out the crap. There's no point in putting magazines on my coffee table that I know I'll never read. And I've been progressively unsubscribing from email newsletters that I usually delete without much thought.

It makes me think of other things in life that we hold on to for no good reason. Perhaps we horde certain objects, which we think have sentimental or educational value but are just cluttering up our lives. What about the clothes you'll never fit again, that could have a useful purpose for someone who's actually that size and can't afford to buy them? Do you ever buy way too much healthy or perishable food with the best of intentions, but it ends up expiring before you eat it? Maybe we hold onto relationships with people who poison our thoughts, holding us back, because we'd rather be negative in a party than be alone. Or we hold a grudge because the person hasn't made it up to us yet, and they have no idea of the power they are holding over us. Even our dreams for the future can hold us captive if they're seriously not achievable. We have to let go of them, focussing on something more realistic rather than sacrificing our present lives by being miserable.

I think from time to time we need to admit we've fallen behind, and we've allowed things to get on top of us. Sometimes we just need to "mark all as read" (or even stop receiving/buying so much stuff in the first place) to clear out our lives. We'll feel so might lighter and in control. The opportunities lost will be gained in other future avenues. We just need to let go.

Have you ever reached a point where you had to cut something out of your life? Are you addicting to reading everything like me?

1 comment:

  1. Haha, yes! I am so addicted to watching that number go to 0 on my Google Reader! But when I go on vacation and then come back, I've had to 'mark all as read'. It was hard, but I managed to do it.