Well that is 1 month away from social media, I avoided Facebook, Twitter, Instagram & Snapchat and my life feels so much better for it.
Here are somethings I have learnt about myself since being “offline” for the first month of the year.
1. I am now actually present. When we sit down to dinner, watch a movie, see friends or if I am just reading a book I am present, attentive and alert. My mind isn’t on my phone, wondering if I have any new comments or likes, its in the moment enjoying other people’s company or actually paying attention to the book or movie I am watching. There is no mindless scrolling and being distracted.
2. Oversharing. I haven’t done this for a while, but I dont feel the need to share every part of my life. I update my friends when I see or speak with them and I am grateful for this platfrom that I can share my life with friends we dont see often or family. However, I really dont miss the oversharing that happens on social media, do I care that you had a Burger for dinner? No not really, but I would read it and probably like the picture anyway. Oh your in hospital & have updated your status to tell the world, I would hope as my friend that you would text me to tell me so I can talk to you privately. I just dont see the point in posting things for likes, comments and appreciation from people that you dont know or haven’t seen or dont even like – dont even get me started on “instafamous”.
3. The Hurt. Its no secret that everyone is passive agressive on social media, or will be a keyboard warrior at some point during their time – we have all done it including myself. You will post a status, quote or photo quite clearly throwing some shade at a situation or person knowing full well they will read it and it will envoke a reaction. It may then end up on full on rant between the 2 on your chosen social media platorm or the offendee may just take the high road and not retalitate but secretly end up in a world of pain behind closed doors. Either way, who is that helping? If you have an issue with someone, talk to them about it face to face or over the phone don’t air your dirty laundry in public, surely we are all better than that? Personally, I just dont see the point in it and I feel its led us all to revert back to being kids in a school playground – when are we going to start acting like adults?
4. Missing Out. I had MASSIVE FOMO at the beginning, I felt I was missing out on things that people would just post on social media assuming everyone would see and that would be the update. However, I soon learnt that actually if it was something I needed to know about I would find out one way or another. However, the only thing that may draw me back is the groups I was part of, that helped me to feel empowered and boost my confidence – that’s the only thing I want to see, I dont want to see the crap.
However, in light of all the negatives that I have realised social media has brought to my life over the years, it allows me to keep in touch with family and friends around the world that I dont see as often or perhaps we dont talk to a lot and that is the side of social media that I really do like. I have thought a lot about my return to social media over the past few weeks and I have made the decision that its not healthy for me to have the apps on my phone. I will fall back into the same trap that I was in before so I wont do it, its not good for me and its not good for my relationship with my friends and family & I actually find it really irritating when people sit on their phone mindlessly scrolling when they are meant to be spending time with me.
So, moving forward any Facebook interactions I will make will be when I am using my laptop or iPad, Twitter & Snapchat I can live without. However I am undecided about Instagram, I do like to see people’s photos and I am more selective about who I follow, so I am going to see how I go without it for a little longer & actually if I am continuing to be ok without it then so be it.
I never thought 1 month away from Social Media would have such a big impact, but it really has and for the better. So if you are thinking of giving something up for lent, dont give up chocolate, give up social media you will soon remember how life was without it!