First off I want to start out by saying I used to eat, sleep, breathe social media. My day would start and end by rotating through instagram, snapchat, facebook, twitter then back to instagram again. Any chance I had I was checking notifications or thinking of what to post next.
It never occured to me how much time I spent online. I feel like anyone who has social media can agree that once you start scrolling hours can go by and still you can still be endlessly entertained. Hours spent looking at memes to food posts, to cute animals and people and celebrity creeping.
One day I was out with a girlfriend and we asked this guy to follow us on instagram. Before we followed ourselves he warned us, “I don’t really use social media. “As I went to follow him back, I saw that he had like 5 posts. Thinking of how little time he probably spent online along with my father telling me that I should just get rid of social media all together I began thinking maybe I should give it a try.
A few weeks later, I called an old friend because I was having a horrible week. As I was talking to her, I remembered that she had deleted all of her social media a year ago due to a terrible break up. After hearing about her quality of life since deleting, I decided then and there it was time.
So what have I realized in two-weeks?
1. I was addicted to clicking on the apps
This might sound weird.. but hear me out. For a few days after deleting the apps I found myself subconsciously opening my phone and scrolling back and forth through my apps looking to click the apps. It wasn’t an intentional “I’m going to go on snapchat”. I was just addicted to clicking the apps and checking them without even realizing it!
2. People spend so much time scrolling through their feed
I began to notice my friends and people around me at restaurants, airports, cars, and stores mindlessly scrolling. Heads bowed while being consumed in this world called social media. I saw people flipping through apps with out realizing that people around them were trying to talk to them. I noticed my friends moods changing after seeing something on social media that upset them or made them feel jealous.
3. I am so much more in the moment
Yes, my conversations are so much better with others now. I am present! My mind feels clear not having to think about what everyone else is posting or who’s liking my pictures. ANDDD I have so much more freedom and did I mention time? quality of sleep?
4. It’s fun being mysterious
I don’t feel like I have to post my every move. I don’t care if others see if I’m having fun because I am and I’m the only person who can judge what that looks like.
Okay.. so confession time Lol
I re-downloaded instagram a couple of times during this social media-free thing. Once to check my messages (after like 3 days) and the other time to post a picture (on day 15).
When I was Checking messages I didn’t feel as guilty as when I posted. After posting I felt the old anxiety of constantly checking to see who and how many people liked my picture and realized I was back in this social media world rather than eating the food and enjoying the conversation with my friend (we were at a restaurant), so I deleted the post right away and felt a million times better.
If you haven’t tried going social media-free before I definitely suggest it even if you feel like you don’t use it often anyways. (I still have the accounts, but I just don’t have the apps downloaded on my phone.) It can be hard at times especially if your friends use social media a lot (like mine) but it is definitely worth it!