Digital Resolutions for the New Year

Happy New Year to all of our readers – I sincerely hope that your holiday celebrations were filled with peace and joy. These first few days of 2012 find me returning to my desk and computer after a nice long break over the Christmas holiday to savor time with family and friends. The excitement and busyness of the past few years, with the growth of my work on the Internet, my speaking engagements around the country, and the publications of The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms, have left me working non-stop.

As we led up to Christmas and I felt my stress level rising, I knew that the time had come to build in a bit of downtime over the holidays. I recognized my need to step away from the keyboard to regain some perspective, to “log off” not only for an enhanced time with my family and loved ones, but also to regain some perspective on the work I find myself doing these days. Over an extended period from Christmas Eve through January 4, I shut off my laptop, signed off of my social networks, and took a severely limited approach to my personal use of technology. Of course this “blog break” didn’t happen overnight and required a great deal of planning and organization, but the end result was a renewed appreciation for my work as well as a desire to reset some priorities in my life.

As I prepared to return to work last week, I found myself pondering my New Year’s resolutions. I’m a big resolution-maker, so I typically spend the first week of January thinking over and praying about my goals for the coming year. My list is always far too long, and has too many items that have been repeated (and remain unattained) year after year. That being said, I wanted to share with you a subset of my goals for 2012 — my “Digital Resolutions.”

Lisa’s Digital Resolutions for 2012

  • Responsible use of digital technology — update virus protection and child monitoring software, limit “elective” use of technology and establish set work hours
  • Innovative use of digital technology — focus on learning about emerging tools in the new year, both hardware and software, to more effectively perform duties and imagine new possibilities
  • Financially savvy use of digital technology — investigate major acquisitions to avoid “impulse buys” of big ticket items such as phones and computers, but also of “throwaway” expenditures such as iPhone apps — only invest in new resources when they will promote enhanced results
  • Spiritually led use of digital technology — refrain from use of technology on Sundays, leave cell phone at home during Mass, practice “unplugged” prayer and protected time for family priorities, do not allow social networking relationships to hinder “real world” relationships

Since you are reading this online, perhaps you also spend a great deal of time in the digital realm. And perhaps you too will want to set your own “Digital Resolutions.” I’d love to hear yours, and would also love to hear from our readers who don’t engage in the practice of setting of resolutions but have personal goals for the effective and spiritually encouraging use of technology.

Lisa M. Hendey

By

Lisa M. Hendey is the founder and editor of CatholicMom.com and the bestselling author of The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms. A podcaster and blogger, Hendey is also a technology contributor for EWTN’s SonRise Morning Show and a regular guest several other radio programs. Lisa gives frequent workshops on faith, family, and Catholic new media topics and resides in Fresno, California, with her family.

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