I Quit Instagram (on Mondays)

A couple weeks ago, I decided I was going to be off all social media platforms at least once a week. I chose Monday because I wanted to start my week with better habits.

The first thing I do every morning is check my phone and my fingers automatically go to Instagram. I mean, it feels like I’m in a vicious cycle that I can’t get out of.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Instagram. It has brought a lot of special connections and it has allowed me to grow Styld by Grace beyond the blog. So being off of it completely on a Monday, when most people are on and catching up from the weekend, can be nerve-wrecking. There’s this feeling like I’ll lose these very important connections I’ve made.

The truth is I won’t be missing out on anything. There is always tomorrow and there’s always an opportunity to delivery great content and connection, no matter what day it is or in which way it’s delivered.

But at the end of the day, my eyes have to be focused on what’s in front of me more than what’s on my phone. My default cannot be scrolling endlessly and in turn neglecting what I have in front of me.

So if you’ve been feeling like you need a little detox from social media for whatever reason, here are some healthy alternatives I’ve replaced it with on Mondays. Read on…

Connection: investing in my relationships

“Are you even listening to me”? I don’t know how many times my husband has said that to me while I’m glued to my phone. Of course I pretend I know exactly what he was saying. (And pretend is the keyword because I’m totally zoned out). This is what motivates me the most to keep going with No Instagram Mondays. Truly connecting with the people I love. Without needing a like, a comment, a share, or any form of validation. Just simple quality time. I’ve also started an email series, “From My Desk To Yours”, for my newsletter subscribers where I share things floating around my desk like my weekly favorites, podcasts, music, and stuff that’s on my heart. It’s such a freeing way to invest in my community without expecting nothing in return.

Faith: connecting with God

The part of me that’s affected the most from being off of social media for a day, on a weekly basis, is my walk with God. I can’t say I’m perfect at this. But eliminating one thing that distracts me from connecting with God is very helpful. Like I said, my instinct is to open Instagram first thing every morning. But knowing I can’t on Mondays, gives me a reason to open the Bible app instead. Or it gives me a reason to listen to Sunday’s sermon again. And on my downtime, instead of scrolling I can actually pray about the stuff that’s worrying me. There is time for connection with God. Sometimes we just are too distracted and don’t make room for it.

Rest: giving my mind a break

At times I feel that my brain needs a break from my phone. My mind needs a break from all the information, updates, memes, and heartbreaking news. Seriously, what am I fueling my mind with? Do I really need to know every detail of every thing that’s happening in the world? I’m not saying I want to be oblivious to what’s happening in the world. I’m just saying I think my mind can’t take in information non stop without processing it in times of rest. In fact, on days when I’ve been off of social media I tend to be less anxious and I’m able to relax a lot easier.

Education: learning new things

On Mondays when I’m tempted to click on Instagram or Facebook, instead I click on my Podcast app. I listen to something that will help nourish my mind. What area in my career, dreams, or goals do I need to learn more about? There’s so much to learn and so many ways to learn new things. Podcasts are just one way. I’ve also watched interviews on Youtube of people who are in my industry to learn how they have navigated their career or entrepreneurial journey.

Friend, if you’re thinking about quitting social media for a day or a week or even a month, there’s really nothing to lose and you WON’T be missing out on anything! It’s definitely not easy and I’ve messed up more times than I’d like to admit. But we shouldn’t put all our eggs in one basket. There’s so many ways to connect, learn, grow, and invest in ourself and others.

If you try it, let me know if any of these alternatives helped you too.

3 Things that Build Lasting Relationships

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Let’s stop for a minute and think. Our lives revolve around interacting with other people. Some people we like and others we don’t. Some interactions are good and others are not so good. I wish all the relationships in my life were pleasant and easy. The reality is that relationships, whether it’s your marriage or a friendship, take effort. And whether we like to admit it or not, our relationships matter and mold who we are.

The effort we put into our relationships will influence the course of our lives. The people we meet, the people we love, the people we encounter, our relationships with them can lead to marriage, lifelong friendships, and even our dream job.

According to God’s word, loving God and loving people is our greatest calling. If it’s important to God then it should be important to us. And if we do all things through love for him and others, then our relationships and life will be a whole lot rewarding and meaningful.

Deep down inside, even us introverts, long to build lasting and deep relationships. Even when we have a billion walls up to protect us, we long for fulfilling relationships.

Being married, losing friendships, and leading others have taught me that to build lasting relationships we gotta:

Be consistent
I’m convinced that consistency is the substance that makes up success. When we are consistent we exude trust, reliability, and legitimacy. How can a person who’s late and unreliable keep a job or get a promotion? The same goes for our friendships, marriages, and people we mentor. We have to be there for the people in our lives, in the good and the bad. It’s pretty sad when I realize that I tend to push people away when things get messy. If we study Christ’s attitude towards His relationships, we see His dedication, consistency, and involvement. He was always present, always encouraging, and always showed up.

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Show Grace
Stepping out to be Jesus’ hands and feet at times can cause us to feel helplessness, discouraged or even downright angry. When we are there for people we see the stuff we wish we didn’t. We encounter people’s hang ups and faults. There’s one thing that gives us the strength and courage to keep building our relationships when they get sticky. It’s called grace. When I got engaged I wish I would’ve known that grace was something I was going to need more than ever. If marriage has taught me anything, it’s taught me that grace goes a long way. It actually is what sustains a relationship. Grace tells me to care and love my husband even when he has offended or hurt me. Grace tells me to reach out to a friend who is being distant even if it means disposing of my pride. Grace tells me to stop being so hard on myself when the fish I “cooked” tastes like crap.
P.S. My cooking has gotten a lot better 😉

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Be Vulnerable
The glue that binds it all together is vulnerability. When I hear the word vulnerability the first things that come to mind are exposure and fear. But vulnerability isn’t meant to expose us in a way that’s detrimental. If we lose the fear of being rejected, isolated, or judged, we are open to vulnerability. And when we are vulnerable with the people we love, meaning we are unafraid to show all of who we are, we can show grace when it’s hard and we can be consistent in their lives. The times I’ve been the most vulnerable, in my career or with my husband or with God, have lead to a total “vulnerability hangover”. Have you ever experienced that? I start questioning myself: “Was I too honest, too outspoken, too open, too caring, too loving? Will letting down this wall make me seem weak?” But looking back it’s those moments that have forged relationships, opportunities and have opened doors of success.

To learn more about vulnerability, connection, and letting go of fear, I highly recommend reading Brené Browns, Daring Greatly. It has been an extreme blessing in my life!


What have you learned from past and present relationships about building lasting connections?

What is one practical way you can build your most valued relationships today?

Anchored by God-What’s the Connection?

As I started thinking of how we can live a life that’s anchored by God, I was reminded of the time that it took me to understand and actually walk this principle out. Living out my faith in God from ages 14-20 was a complete roller coaster for me. At times, I was devoted, and at other times, I was completely astray. I made connections with the wrong people and decided I wasn’t going to do the “church thing”.

But one night in my dorm room, a few months before turning 21, I told God I was completely exhausted and tired of living on a never ending cycle of devotion and unfaithfulness towards Him. I was at a point where the things I said I’d never do, I did. And the heaviness of being away from God, was getting to me. Well, God spoke to me so clearly that night. I will never forget it. He told me I was standing at a crossroads and I had to choose His way or my way. But I couldn’t be in-between any longer. That night I decided to get off the roller coaster I had been on for 6 years and decided to live a life devoted to God.

My heart was resolved, but I had to put action to my decision. Actions that before I hadn’t taken seriously. I believe the actions I took by faith, are the ones that have helped me stay connected to God. And they are the actions we as believers must take on a daily basis to be anchored by God.

So what are these practical actions that keep us connected and anchored?

1. The Church
1 Corinthians 12:12-28
Yes, going to church will keep us connected to God. The bible teaches us that we should not neglect congregating as believers. I used to say that I didn’t like church because people were judgemental and controlling. The truth of the matter is that churches are comprised of people. And people, including myself, are not perfect. There will be judgemental and controlling people at church, but there are also loving, generous, grace-filled people that help us walk out our faith. The church is not a building, the church is made up of the people that go to the building. It’s our duty to encourage the church to keep fighting the good fight of faith. If you’re alone on this, it’s going to be a lot harder to stay anchored. But if there are people encouraging you and inspiring you to “keep swimming”, it will be easier to walk with God.

2. God’s Word
2 Timothy 3:16 | Psalm 119:11
What does the bible mean to you? Do you take its words as truth or as simple suggestions? I would like to submit that the bible is our guide and ultimate truth. It is literally the words God speaks to us. If we need to know what to do with our lives, or the will of God for our lives, then we need to read His teachings. The bible, because it comes DIRECTLY from God, is our strength. When we are about to throw in the towel, God’s word gives us the strength, the knowledge, the understanding, and the determination, to stay anchored. There are so many verses of encouragement and so many promises for those who are living for God. God’s word is the love story of how God gave it all up, to give us freedom and life. No other story can compare to the one written in the Bible because it is not fiction, it is true and it is true because it comes from the very mouth of God.

Maybe all of this is foreign to you as you’re reading or maybe this is something you’ve heard so many times. If it’s new, don’t be overwhelmed. Take steps every day towards these actions. Take an online bible study, read a Christian book, or read a Psalm every day. And find a church that believes in and teaches from the Bible.  If this is not new to you and you’ve heard it all your life, then be encouraged to not grow weary. Take it up a notch. Make a commitment to dig deeper into God’s word and continue serving at your home church.


What are some practical steps you have taken to stay anchored by God?

Do you have to recommit to making God your anchor? Or do you have to make a decision to follow Him once and for all?