My relationship with social media has always been a bit up-and-down. I am sure I’m not the only one who spends far too much time posting updates and seeing what others are up to. I find it helps me stay in touch with people and keeps me informed of what’s happening in the world. But it can also bring me down when others don’t respond or engage with me for whatever reason (I’m quite a sensitive one in case you hadn’t guessed!).
Last month I decided to carry out an experiment and came off social media for one month. A whole month! I wanted to see what impact this would have on me.
I’m not going to lie, it was extremely hard at times. On the odd occasion I found myself cheating and taking a quick look online. I just couldn’t help myself. But on the whole I managed to spend the majority of my time away from it.
It was a strange month because I maintain a lot of my connections with others through social media. So at times I felt incredibly isolated and lonely, particularly as my ‘real life’ connections are limited. I felt like I was missing out on something, not knowing what was going on ‘out there’.
But I also found that it created more space and time for me to focus on other things, things that really meant something to me. I managed to read a lot of books, I completed courses, I moved forward with my writing projects and with my general life goals.
Who knows, I may have done some of these things anyway. But in that month I wasn’t tempted by some of the usual distractions that appear when I want to avoid something or put it off. So it gave me time to really focus on these things.
Now that I’ve returned to social media, I have changed the way I use it. As long as it’s around, I won’t stop using it because of the benefits it brings me. However I am making it work better for me and using it in a much more positive way. I have limited my contacts in number and am instead using it to help me move forward with things, and that is reflected in who I follow. Instead I will be putting my focus and energy into ‘real life’ relationships. From now on, it’s all about quality rather than quantity.