Take Time Away From Social Media

     Step away from the world of Social media. I have read many articles of people becoming happier leaving their social media accounts, and putting their phone aside. Doing this gives you time to prioritize your life. You realize how much free time you have to do more productive things in life. You have time to run errands, exercise, go for a walk, read etc,. You have time to get things done that you wanted to do. When you step back, you realize how many times you checked your phone a day. It imprisons you, but we can all break free of that cycle! It isn’t easy, but once you step back, you realize how much you don’t really miss it.

     I am writing this, because I recently decided to pull back on my social media/phone use. I barely used my phone today at work. I realized how much freedom that brings. I also realized how much time flew by when I am not constantly checking my phone, and looking at the time. I was just in the moment, and it felt great. I have had a sense of peace, since I pushed back on SNS use. I had more time to read, which I love to do, but barely did, because of my social media use. I have more time to gain knowledge, and expand my mind. Lack of social media use can really allow you to focus on yourself and expand your mind, which is very important. You can benefit physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually from lack of social media use.

     Now most people would prefer to delete social media. I choose not to do that, because I do think there are aspects that are beneficial. I also don’t like avoiding things, since it won’t help me overcome my struggles. If social media causes lots of distress and sadness in your life, then it is best to avoid it. I like the feeling of being able to go on social media, and not let the negativity get to me. I feel empowered being able to overcome this struggle. There are a couple of struggles I deal with that I am sure many of you deal with.

     Comparisons are hard to avoid, and is probably a big reason people leave social media. I have done that as well. It is an innate trait in us humans unfortunately. I have a Facebook friend that I went to school with who was able to get a job I haven’t yet. Now I can be bitter, sad, or angry about her posting about her job, or I can take a step back, and realize she did something I didn’t to get that job, and it is her time, not mine at the moment. I also don’t know her real life, and I am pretty sure everything isn’t perfect. I think seeing things differently can change your experience online. This is why I do not see social media as good nor bad. It is our thoughts/perceptions that make it good or bad. It is the people behind the screen that makes the experience good or bad.

     I also can get annoyed, and frustrated by some people’s comments, because I don’t agree with how they see/say things, but once I step back. I realize we all have different points of view on things, and even though I don’t think their way of going about things is the best. Nothing I say can change their opinion on things, so it is best to let it go, and keep scrolling. People can be negative and mean, but it is best not to get caught in it, and keep it moving, don’t engage! I have had a sense of peace and empowerment from being able to do that.

     Another thing is getting noticed/likes. I am sure you thought, why didn’t this post get any likes? It was an awesome post!? I have said this myself, and I know others who have as well. I have known people who took down a post, because it didn’t get enough likes. The amount of likes validate us. It gives me, you, that sense of accomplishment, but how sad is that? People liking a status validating us. That isn’t something that should validate us, it isn’t an accomplishment. All the people with lots of likes, lots of friends/followers. Are they all happy? I can guarantee that it is a big no! The amount of likes doesn’t benefit you in any way. It may even cause stress, because now you have to top that post, or make other interesting posts from that point on.

     One last thing that may be a reason people don’t want to leave is FOMO(Fear Of Missing Out). This is a reason I didn’t want to step a way. I realized once I stepped away, that there is far more I am missing out by being online all the time. There is potential, creativity, opportunities, experiences, and self growth that you miss out on by being attached to social media. The stuff you fear of missing on social media is trivial.

     Now I like Social Media, because it connects me to others around the world that appreciates all the things I love. I also like to share the things that I like with others. The problem arises when there is a need for attention, likes, making comparisons, bullying others, hatred of differences of opinion. I won’t say leave social media, but learn to use it less and more wisely. Don’t get caught up in the attention seeking and negativity. I still struggle with this sometimes, but have gotten much better at handling it recently. It is a process. I will say, if social media cultivates mental health problems-anxiety, depression, addiction-it is best to leave it behind. Just to note, unless it is an addiction or bullying. The problems you may have on social media may not be solved by just leaving, because you are not facing your struggles, and it may spill into your real life, so you should be cognizant of what bothers you, and if it is something you need to face and work on. In the end,there really isn’t a negative consequence to leaving social media, so if you think that is best, then leave it behind.