(Notes from) The Twitter Anxiety Workflow

A process unfolds.

Step one: Tell yourself that you will not open Twitter at diabetically-mandated breakfast. You succeed at not opening Twitter at diabetically-mandated breakfast.

(be proud of yourself)

Step two: After diabetically-mandated breakfast, tell yourself that since you avoided opening Twitter at diabetically-mandated breakfast, you might as well take a look for a brief moment because what can go wrong?

(reconsider pride, recall episode eleven of the ninth series of DOCTOR WHO and the teleporter and the skulls)

Step three: Look at Twitter and let your eyes glaze over. Maybe there’s more, maybe I’m missing something: this is what you tell yourself. Scroll. Curse the slowness of your iPhone 6; it wasn’t like this before iOS11.

(stupid iOS11 / stupid iPhone 6 / but I love you anyway, for some reason or another)

Step four: Well, maybe, wait. Check your profile to see… I don’t know what. Something, certainly; something important, to be sure.

(hate yourself)

Step five: Check to make sure that over the course of your mindless, glazed-over scrolling you haven’t retweeted something or liked something untoward because to do so will upset what you perceive to be this latest iteration of your digital self as you begin to recognize this behavior to be a digital manifestation of OCD.

(hate yourself; breathe)

Step six: Close Twitter and engage in the next morning activity, most likely washing the dishes from aforementioned, diabetically-mandated breakfast.

(hate that you hate yourself but feel good that you are now getting something concrete and useful done; breathe)

Step seven: While washing dishes, consider deleting the last thing you posted that wasn’t from this site.

(hate that you hate yourself but hate yourself more for thinking about Twitter while you are doing something more important like washing the last bits of egg the dogs missed from their pre-wash cleaning of the plate (cook omelet at slightly higher setting to form a more solid crust); consider breathing again)

Step seven: Finish dishes, open Twitter again, go to profile and decide not to delete that last tweet because, clearly, it is your feed and should be representative of yourself; this is the you that’s out in the world and oh fuck

(hang head)

Step eight: Close Twitter, put away phone with great flourish, consider deleting entirely (Twitter or the phone, not sure which) then realize that you have no other way of accessing Twitter should that mythical day arrive when it will actually be necessary and decide to relegate Twitter to a folder labeled “Insecurity Work” or “Reassurance Seeking” deep on the second or third phone screen of your slow-ass iPhone 6 to hide it from the rest of the day and certainly from the next morning and the next diabetically-mandated breakfast.

(deep breath / inhale / exhale)

Step nine: Collect notebook, collect coffee, place rubber band on wrist to replace subconsious urge to check with a snap (this worked when I quit smoking, so I might as well…)


Step ten: Return to office, write something — possibly this — to place in public for purposes of accountability and mental exorcism. Later, post this to Twitter (via Buffer) with a picture as continued proof of existence and make sure, you know, just check, that it posted correctly as you attempt to bear the steps elucidated herein in mind and avoid repeating said steps at diabetically-mandated lunch.


A process has unfolded.