Tracking Your Life on Your Blog Sidebar: Are You a Self-Quantifier?
By polchic on July 27, 2012
Because I needed to remind myself where I’ve been and where I hope to be going. I had to see that it hasn’t been five years of stagnation, of nothing. That a #$%^ lot happened in those years. Things that have shaped and continue to shape me. Some days this list depresses me. Other days it gives me strength. Why do I keep this list handy?
Luna from Life from Here: Musings from the Edge suggests: “I think we track numbers and dates because it's our natural tendency to want order and control for something that is often so beyond our control. Plans, facts and details are within our reach, when outcomes are not.”
"I kept a timeline on my blog to document my years of infertility and treatment before moving on to adoption,” says Luna, “I did it for myself, but the adoption timeline was also with others in mind, since I was asked so often about it."
Publicly accessible timelines not only jog our own memories, but they do offer a road map for our readers. While she doesn’t keep a timeline, Lori, from Write Mind Open Heart admits, “As a reader, I like the idea of a timeline to help me quickly get a sense of where the blogger is and what has brought her to the present time.”
One of the Two Hot Mamas completely agrees. “I love them [timelines] on other people's blogs, because it helps me connect with them over events, even if say, I was TTC, and they'd already had a child. I could know, oh, this is what they went or struggled through (quickly, without having to slog through posts. which I'd also do, but having more of a connection makes me more likely to stick it out and read, you know?)”
That same hot mama sides with Luna on the Why: “I think it's human nature to track and count things. We are so drawn to knowing and wanting to understand that it's only understandable that we want to control or track those things that we can.”
So, do you keep your quantifications private, or are there pieces of your data sets that you willingly share? Is it helpful to you see others track their progress in various areas, or do you, like many of the commenters to Mr. Rico’s article think we should pull our heads out of our computers and phones and stop counting? What is the object of your counting obsession?
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