Maintaining Balance

Found on SXC.HU An issue that many newbies and oldies to social media face: What’s one too many tweets? How often should I log onto Facebook? How many hours should I spend reading these great blogs or listening to podcasts?

With so much new and exciting material coming out every hour of every day, the typical social media user can easily feel overwhelmed. I struggle with this constantly! Just tonight, my Google Reader reminds me every day of the many blog posts I have stacked up like books on a reading list.

A girl’s gotta maintain a personal life, and that’s hard enough to balance with senior year in college. (Whoever said senior year was the time to slack off?) Now let’s add in the time I have to spend online keeping up with industry news and freelance business, let alone Facebook friends and Twitterers.

Part of my thesis deals with this necessity for balance. As Catholics who use new media, we should strive to integrate our faith into not only the content of our new media interactions but the method by which we use new media. An integral branch of this methodological tree is maintaining a balanced lifestyle. We might look to St. Benny of Nursia as an example. His motto demanded balance: ora et labora, pray and work.

St+BenedictNotice what comes first: ORA, pray. If we aren’t praying, our work is in a sense empty. But if we pray and don’t work, nothing gets done. Both are essential to living for the Lord – we all work and pray in the way God allows us to, if we ask him for the opportunity.

How do you pray? How do you work?

Reflect on this today for five minutes. Your ways of praying and working are unique to you, because your relationship with God and with the world is unique.

How do social/new media play a role in the way you pray? In the way you work?

If, upon reflection, you don’t see a balance, find a way to fix that. Ask good ol’ Benny to help you out.

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