Last night I went to bed with a heavy heart and spirit as I grappled with some pretty big issues and the sick realization that I have slowly become someone I am not proud of. That in many ways, I have reverted back to that “mean girl” of nine years ago, when my then living mother gave me the talk about my bitchy ways that made me want to change. I have worked long and hard to be mindful, to be present, and to be open but in the fast paced world where it seems we spend so much time connecting electronically, I have also allowed myself to indulge in snark. Snark seems so natural in our digital lives, it seems harmless and it flows oh so well. On the surface a little snark seems fine, it feels good, it gets laughs, but is it really healthy? Are there certain beings who must avoid snark at all costs because it’s like any addiction, a little is never enough, and too much will hurt you.
I have taken my online persona and at times allowed it to creep into my very real off-line life and its hurting people, people that I love. Last night, when this sad reality hit me, I was sick, sick at the thought that my own behavior was hurting others at a time when I considered myself “mindful”.
The universe often gives us what we need, when we need it most, this morning, my intent was to head to a yoga class and fit in some meditation, but as I was drinking my morning coffee, I came across this piece discussing Brene Brown’s campaign to stop snark. This piece could not have come at a better time for me “We judge in areas where we feel insecure, and we pick people who are doing worse than we are. I think when you hear someone snark at someone about something, that’s clear as day that person has some real shame around that issue. When I’m really on that judgment train I have to stop and think, “What am I feeling?” If I’m comfortable in my body, in my work, I don’t care about yours.”
Once again, Brene Brown just spoke to my soul, the truth is when I am mindful and I check in internally, often a check in will re-center me or make me aware of what is really going on below the surface. The problem is there isn’t always time or frankly desire to check in and once I get on the snark roller coaster; I have a hard time getting off. I know that certain situations feed my snark habit and frankly online life in general is one of my biggest triggers. I am simply less mindful, more easily caught up, and more likely to start feeling bad about myself when I am online. Offline BGIM does not compare herself professionally to others, one of my dearest friends in the world is a better grant writer than me, and when she has her successes, I am as happy for her as she is. Online BGIM struggles in ways that frankly aren’t healthy, I admit I wonder why did blogger A get this, or blogger B get this, I am tired of riding the snark roller coaster that is brought on by my insecurities.
I imagine like any negative habit, it will be a journey for me to break my bad habits, but I am willing to do the heavy lifting because it’s good for me.
2 thoughts on “Breaking the snark habit…it’s killing me”
Funny you mention this, I just received my copy of Brene Brown’s book Daring Greatly, it is definitely worth reading. Snark is a habit and it is an easy one to fall into. I guess when so many others are doing it, it is easy to think it is ok,but I’m always appreciative of people who choose their words and find more effect ways to express how they are feeling.
I think you are one of those people, I know that there have been many things I have read in your blog over the past two years (and in your archives) that have really made me think about what I believe and why I believe it. We are all works in progress and have difficult times, but you have a lot of good things to say and I know you will find great ways to express them.
thanks for posting. i hear you on the temptation to tweet candidly – i like to hear what people are ticked about but just as interested in what brought someone joy or appreciation. A toxic twitter feed can be just as much of a downer as a “real life” environ full of negative people, so I try to find a balance just as I do IRL. Also, i had not heard of Brene Brown but will def be following. 🙂
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