Dearest readers: After meeting with Beliefnet.com editors last Friday to talk it through, I’ve decided to stop writing Chattering Mind a week from today.
While I’m nervous about this idea of mine and sad about the loss of my ability to connect with you through such prime online real estate, this change makes sense to us all. For me, it comes as a huge relief.
First, I am tired. I’ve been writing this blog for 21 months, completing some 1,400 posts. This job keeps me on the computer longer than I think is good for me. After taking time off, resting my poor carpal-tunneled arms, I want to finish some longer pieces I’ve had on my mind for national magazines.
Second, the blog is not growing, hovering now around 24,000 page views a month. This is small for Beliefnet. The Beliefnet team has stood by me–we’ve been aware of the slow growth for many months–and while there are lots of ways we could jazz up the blog by making Monday interview-a-healer day, Tuesday yoga pose day, Wednesday tips on whole foods cooking day, Thursday a guided meditation or something… my energy for that is surprisingly minimal. I’m not sure why. If I were in another place psychologically, that would sound like a lot of fun. After a rest, I could do that. But for now, it feels right to completely shake up my day and spend substantially less time online.
Elizabeth Lesser wrote a great piece on change in the new year for Beliefnet last January. She recommends that we expect change, make friends with it and listen to its message. So whenever apprehension about this coming change surfaced over the weekend, I thought of her. She says, “Join forces with the dynamic flow of life,” and quotes the African-American theologian Howard Thurman: “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs are people who have come alive.”
My kids are ecstatic that I’ll soon have more time to be with them. “Mommy, you were stressed!” said the little one. True, there were days when I’d come upstairs from my basement office and just slap dinner together, days when I’d lost so much sleep the night before preparing my blog in advance, I’d almost nod off driving the kids home from school. I never figured out how to write fast and make the blog easy, so I am thrilled that I will have some months of examining a new way to balance, “be with,” and, as Thurman advises, “come alive.”
We’ll have the week to process all this. And I want to do justice to the many half-written blog items I already have in my queue here! I was never very good at getting huge amounts of people talking through the posting process, but perhaps we can talk about this. Hearing back from you has always been a thrill. What changes are you yourself embracing? Are you following your bliss?
I’m not saying farewell today. And there is another much easier-to-execute Beliefnet project I might help them out with in the fall. So send me your email address at email@example.com, and I’ll let you know what I’m up to.
P.S. Neale Donald Walsch’s “Conversations with God” blog will appear next week in the Glow newsletter.