Moment app | did I cut down on screen time?

As promised, here’s the video I put together of my experience with the Moment app. If you didn’t see my last post, the Moment app is something you can use to track how much time you spend glued to your phone (and / or other devices).

Overall it was a helpful experience, although it didn’t have a huge impact on reducing my screen time. In one week alone I spent over 24 hours staring at a screen – 24 hours! That should disgust me, but in reality it doesn’t.

For a start, the app showed me that I only picked up my phone for around 5 minutes at a time, so it’s not as if I’m spending consecutive hours staring at Twitter.

I also used my phone for essential things such as replying to messages, and generally keeping in touch with loved ones.

Give the video a watch if you’re curious as to how the app works and how you can benefit from it!

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

(P.S. : I’m so sorry this is a day late, what with college and other responsibilities there are not enough hours in the day anymore!)

screen time & social media | love + hate

To be very honest, social media is one of the loves of my life. It has brought me to incredible places, both literally and metaphorically. I have met numerous wonderful people all because of networks like Twitter. Hell, I’ve even had a chance to connect to some of the most important people in my life (*cough* Lady Gaga *cough*) purely because of social media.

Websites such as Facebook and Instagram are often cited as sources of cyberbullying, anxiety, and other nefarious goings-on. All of this is true, but the positive elements of these networks are often overlooked. The word network in and of itself says it all; we have the most incredible facility at our fingertips to keep in touch with the world and expand our horizons.

In spite of all of this, I do find myself questioning the amount of time I spend scrolling aimlessly through the web; it’s a wonder I have don’t have square eyes by now! In light of this, I’ve decided to download the ‘Moment’ app. Its main purpose is to monitor your screen time and put you to shame about how much you use your phone. At least that’s how it feels…

In all seriousness, it will be very interesting see whether my experience with the app contributes to my overall wellbeing. I’ve chosen to document my experience in vlog format for my YouTube channel, which you can find here. All going well, the vlog will be up next Friday.

Do you over-use social media? Could you live without it? Let me know in the comments and we can all console each other!

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

I am 22 | getting older

This week – on the 26th September, to be precise – I turned 22. In all honesty, I had a lovely birthday surrounded by the people I love, and for that I am incredibly grateful.

What made me a feel just a little bit melancholy was the realisation that I am getting older. This was my first real birthday as an adult; the years between 18 and 21 are still youthful, in my opinion. 22 sounds like an age where you should have everything together. Realistically I know that very few people in their early twenties actually know what they’re doing, but it can definitely seem as though they do. I’ve yet to hit that sweet spot of wisdom and selflessness. My best self.

I get glimpses of it occasionally. Feeling confidence in the way my jacket sits on my shoulders. Not overthinking every smile and gesture that comes both from me and towards me.

Anyway. This is definitely something I’ll write more about, but for now I’ll leave you with a song that encompasses the above. Coincidentally, it’s one of my favourite songs of all time, something you’ll know if you watched my 50 Facts About Me video (shameless plug number 47472…).  

Love and luck (and apologies for the late post!),

Clodagh X

site redesign, seven hundred + posting schedule | update

Some of you may have noticed that The Electric Oracle is looking a little different these days; I decided to change things up and redesign the layout. Personally I think it looks sharper – I hope you all like it!

We also hit 700 followers this weekend – as always, thank you endlessly for your support.

Speaking of followers, I’ve been having trouble following people all weekend –  I promise I’m not ignoring anyone! Hopefully the glitch will be resolved soon.

The last thing I wanted to address was a posting schedule for the coming months; I’ll be heading into my final year of my degree in late September, which means I’ll be busy. Very, very busy! In light of this, I’ve decided that any new post I make will go up on Friday, hopefully before 2pm GMT. There will be exceptions to the schedule, but by in large this is how it’ll be.

I hope you’re all as happy and healthy as can be; I can hardly believe we’re in the throes of autumn, summer whizzed past! Hopefully autumn will bring even more new horizons. I’m hoping to make more videos (you can watch the one I’ve already made here) as well as continue writing – what are all of your hopes for the coming season?

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

dynamics and identity | you are your own person

We are all sorts of things to all sorts of people. The ‘loud one’ in our friend group, yet the ‘quiet one’ at home. It is phenomenal how one person can assume a myriad of identities dependent on setting and circumstance. What’s even more fascinating, however, is how little control we appear to have over our place within a group. Without even realising we slot neatly into a jigsaw, twisting and curving to make room for others in spite of oneself.

There often comes a time at which we no longer want to be a part of the jigsaw. We want to clip a corner here, an edge there, all in an attempt to become a better person (or so one hopes). This isn’t always easy. In fact, it’s never easy as far as I’m concerned. You can reshape yourself as much as you want, but you cannot reshape others unless they want it for themselves.

This in turn means that it is incredibly difficult to change how you are perceived within a group. No matter how few arguments come as a result of your character, if you are perceived as ‘the one who starts arguments’, that is how you will be identified. If you are ‘the peacemaker’, you can start as many arguments you like without turning a hair, all because of your perceived identity within the group.

Grim and all as this may sound, there is something liberating about this realisation. Freedom accompanies the notion that battling others is futile. Your real target should be yourself. Changing yourself means changing your world, not the world we share. The people and events you attract will come as a result of said change, in stark contrast to what came as a result of your place in the jigsaw.

You are your own person. You are free.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

five hundred of you | something different

I’ve gone through about 14 clichés trying to come up with an introduction to this post. THANK YOU FOR 500! As always, I never ever expected to gain any kind of following when I started The Electric Oracle, so to see it grow like this is wonderful.

To celebrate this milestone (of sorts), I’ve put together something a little bit different…

I thought it would be nice to ~expand my horizons~, so there you have it! I won’t necessarily be making videos on a regular basis, but I enjoyed putting this one together + I hope you enjoy watching it just as much. I mean, it’s shoddily edited and very very cringeworthy, but hey. Life is too short to care, “those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind” etc etc etc. If you make it to the end of the video, I applaud you.

Love, luck & gratitude,

Clodagh X

pleasantly uninspired

Big emotions often lead to big results – for better or for worse. On the other end of the spectrum, emotional placidity may lead to tranquility, but nothing more. I use the term ‘placidity’ as I’m not referring to a lack of emotion so much as stability of emotion.

These past few weeks I’ve felt very placid. Calm, even. The kind of calm you feel within a daily routine – everything is familiar, right down to the smell of tea and toast in the morning. With this familiarity comes a sense of living in the present moment; rather than dwell upon your insatiable desire to succeed in life, you worry more about whether there’s enough milk in the fridge for tea later.

Living in the present moment may be lovely, but circumstantially speaking, it is uninspiring. This doesn’t automatically make it ‘bad’ to live in the present; on the contrary, if feeling calm coincides with feeling uninspired, then I am more than happy to make the trade-off every once in a while.

                  image2e

This leads me to the thinking behind this post, or the reason why I haven’t been posting all that regularly of late. I haven’t been feeling inspired – and it’s been delightful! I’ve really enjoyed this pleasant, homey feeling. When it did occur to me that I hadn’t posted in over a week, I decided to embrace this ‘lack’ of inspiration rather than force something into my mind.

I really hope you’re all doing well and that you get to experience this placidity soon, if you haven’t felt it already this year.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X

moulding emotion | look at a feeling, let it pass

It starts in your gut. You feel your stomach churn, and soon your mind starts spinning. These cogs turn together, forcing your mouth into action so that, before you know it, you’ve said something you’ll live to regret. All because of a feeling that spun out of control.

This is an all-too-familiar experience for the majority of the human race. Someone says something, we take it personally and bam! the insecurities tumble out at record speed. It is phenomenal how any issue we have with the person facing us can be compressed into a little package of hate within seconds of a misinterpreted remark.

The same thing can happen when we are faced with unpleasant circumstances. Combine this with a lack of control over said circumstances and you have enough fuel to keep the cogs whirring until you’re engulfed in nothing but feeling. All rationality goes out the window, leaving you at the mercy of your primal instincts.

While you can’t necessarily stop a feeling from emerging, you can stop it from developing. All you have to do is acknowledge its presence, and let it pass. Don’t act on it. If that means staying silent for a second, or pausing for breath, don’t hesitate to do so. Just be aware that you’re feeling angry or hurt, even unloved, and allow this awareness to give you a heightened level of understanding. It is with this understanding that we can grow both internally and externally; our relationships with ourselves and others improve, and we ultimately live better lives.

This is something I’ve had to learn the hard way as I’ve grown up (I use the term ‘grow up’ pretty loosely as I still have an awful lot of growing up to do!). So many arguments and bad feelings could have been prevented if I’d just held myself back for a moment. When I did eventually figure all of this out – roughly when I was about 18 –  it was as if I’d been given a new power. I sincerely hope I’ve passed on this power by writing this post!

The next time an unwanted feeling starts growing inside of you, be aware that you do not have to give in to it. Look at it, and let it pass.

Love and luck,

Clodagh X