With the notable exception of my books in paperback format, the practical entirety of my professional output is digital in nature. When I write an online article or publish a YouTube video, there’s no physical manifestation. Aside from the bits and bytes on some server somewhere, of course. When I pour in hours upon hours into editing or content creation, there’s no tangible thing I can hold in my hands. And likely because of all that, the analog continues to entice me.

I know it sounds crazy. And no, I’m not volunteering to go over to your house to do it. But I enjoy a quiet satisfaction in otherwise mundane, ordinary household chores. Folding laundry. Washing dishes. Shoveling snow. While I’m not at all interested in performing these tasks a lot, they offer a strange reprieve from my otherwise digital existence. A pile of folded laundry provides a sense of mild accomplishment. I can bask in the glory of a freshly mowed lawn.

The Twitter thread above started because I commented on how my life has changed. In the original tweet, I mentioned that I was sipping on herbal tea while listening to instrumental jazz, “pouring my heart out in a blog post.” Aside from the blog post part, this depiction is a far cry from the man I used to be. Maybe I’m getting older. Maybe I’m turning into a granny.

It started out partly tongue in cheek when I jokingly asked if I should learn how to crochet. While I may never pick up the hook and yarn, there is absolutely a satisfaction from holding something in your hands and being able to say, “I made that.” Maybe that’s why, as frustrating as it can be sometimes, I’m drawn to building IKEA furniture. Go figure.

This is both in line with and completely counter to the appeal of the Buddha Board. Sure, I could play around in Photoshop or draw something on a tablet with a stylus, but that’s still digital. It’s not tangible. The analog experience of picking up a real brush, even if I’m only painting with water, is therapeutic. And rewarding. And yet the inherently fleeting nature of the Buddha Board means I need to let go of this physical manifestation of my creativity.

YouTuber Peter McKinnon recently stated something I thought was rather poignant. You should do something that has nothing to do with what you do. Even if you are fortunate enough to “do what you love” for a living, you need a hobby or an interest that is completely unrelated. It’s one way to battle burnout and promote a greater sense of overall well-being.

So, long story long, maybe I should make something analog. It just probably won’t be crochet. I just want to get my hands on something other than a keyboard and mouse, you know?