Culture | Habits | Learning

To Back Up or Pivot

Try new things enough and something will go wrong.  The trick is in the recovery.  Yesterday I downloaded a new theme that would work well with Elementor to enhance the look of the blog.  Two minutes after downloading it my site was sending out random posts in Latin.  No, we can’t have that.  I copied my last five days worth of posts and used Jetpack to backup to a different version of my site.  I chose to go back two themes ago, just in case there was anything in the first iteration that triggered the mess that occurred in the second.  As I warned, the blog is a work in progress.  I’m still assessing where to take it from here, but it will continue to evolve.

Life doesn’t always offer the do-over.  We all find ourselves wishing we’d done something differently, taken the different path, not said that stupid thing, or a thousand other mistakes that proved somewhere between disappointing, embarrassing, disastrous and devastating.  But so long as we avoid plunging too deep into the devastating bucket we’re all human and mistakes happen.  Governors in the United States are facing the real consequences of politics and public pressure over science as they re-open restaurants, bars and beaches and see COVID-19 cases spike.  But so do the rest of us.  We either take it seriously or we risk it all.  No do-overs in a pandemic.

One troubling thing in our current culture is the tendency of people to judge others by a mistake they made.  Public shaming of people who appear to be doing something horrible or outrageous.  I think of the Covington Catholic High School kids who appeared to be confronting an older protester.  People judged them as thugs until the rest of the video was shown and it became obvious they were just reacting as they passed the man.  I’m sure those kids went through hell, and might still get some hate mail from ignorant people.  The thing is, it’s easy to judge others, it’s a lot harder to look at ourselves and see what we need to work on.

I quietly deleted the Facebook app again yesterday.  I gave it another three months after deleting it from January to April, and frankly the ratio of angry opinion, shaming of others and political debate remains way higher than the sharing of pictures of family and friends.  Add in all the garbage Facebook is pushing on you and it just doesn’t seem to be a healthy place to hang out.  With the Election coming up in the United States, it’s only going to get worse.  So I pivoted away from Facebook once again.  If anyone wants to know what I’m up to they can find me here.  I make a point of reaching out to others and find I do it more when I don’t rely on Facebook to show me what they’re up to.

Seeing the need for change is one thing.  Doing something about it is quite another.  Sometimes its as easy as deleting an app or backing up to a different version of your blog, but sometimes it requires a lot more work.  2020 is a year many wish we could have a do-over on.  We can’t have the time back, but we can use it well while we’re living it.  We shouldn’t always move forward, but we also can’t always back up.  Sometimes all we can do is pivot and move in a different direction entirely.  And do the work to make the present a bit better and the future better still.  Here’s to the good days ahead.

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