This week’s re-run (a post from August of 2017) is evidence that I have battled with social media for yeeeeeears and also that I have promoted social media sabbaticals for an equal length of time.
So, without further ado…
I mostly love being connected on social media. Sure, it has its flaws, but everything does. However, I must admit: it.exhausts.me.
I really thought I had my scrolling under control. I would check in “real quick” when kiddos were preoccupied or while dinner was simmering. Sneak in a quick update during commercial breaks. I figured I spent ten minutes here and there throughout my day.
However, two weeks ago my baby girl said something that sobered me up:
” Mom, put down your phone and watch me.”
Called out by my three year old and devastated. I spent some time reflecting and really tracking my usage.
Scrolling while they were building legos.
Scrolling while we snuggled on the couch.
Scrolling while I thought they weren’t looking, but turns out they are always watching.
So, here is my reveal that turns out, is real hard to admit: I spend way too much time online. I cringe to think of the cumulative number of days I have wasted over the years “catching up” on things that really don’t matter.
Don’t get me wrong, I love celebrating with those I have known in the past and present, praying for those going through challenges, and offering support to those struggling; that’s what humans do.
But, there are countless pictures taken of every moment and subsequently posted somewhere. We are unintentionally passing along a message to our younger generation: you are missing something.
Well, we are…
…and it is not Joe Schmoe’s vacay…
…it is life.
I haven’t taken as many pictures this week, other than mental ones, and I have enjoyed keeping our day to day moments to ourselves; really soaking them in. I am ashamed to admit but I forgot what it meant to truly be present.
I have been reflecting on the purpose of social media. All too often I am finding that social media is also being used as a means of punishment. People delete and block others from their accounts. They unlike statements and remove comments or pictures. We have become a society that places more value on statuses than real-life relationships.
It is to be expected. We live in a perfectly portrayed online world and are judged for anything less. So many people are able to say whatever they want without fear of repercussion; a simple delete means it never happened. We are in a time that allows judgement to be passed easily and hurtfully: behind the false security of a screen. All the while becoming numb to the damage being inflicted from online trolling and bullying.
I have gotten caught up in hype and hysterics; overwhelmed by phone notifications. But, the lack of beeps projected from my phone over the last seven days has been freeing.
I have been around people of different races, genders, sexual orientation, political viewpoints… and guys, we all got along. Woah. Kindness really does exist.
Over the last week I have noticed a shift in myself.
I have been more patient with my little loves and less distracted.
I have been more exhausted but less run down.
I have been more aware and less overwhelmed.
The days have gone just as fast, but somehow, I have had more time.
I have been less busy and more productive.
Instead of scrolling, I have gotten down on the floor and played with my kids. Watched their cartoons with them. I have talked to them, and really heard their little voices. Felt their little arms around my neck. Watched their little feet walk through their days. Their little hands exploring their world.
It is time for me to find real balance between online and real life. Apparently, I was deluding myself into believing I already had it. To find a way to use social media as a way to promote kindness, compassion, fairness. To #stophate and to share a moment or two.
Every moment of our lives may not be worthy of being shared but it is worthy of being lived.
Sadly, I had just forgotten. But, letting my screen fade to black reminded me.
…a Facebook fast
…an Instagram repreive
…a Pinterest pause
…a Twitter time out.
It’s worth it.
**Originally posted August 25, 2017**
Do Less, Live More E-Book
Oh and hey, just wanted to throw out a lovely little reminder that I wrote an e-book and you can still download it and if you like it and want to share it all over your socials, I won’t be mad about it.
So, go ahead and click those red words up above and download my love letter to you!
No pressure. Or rather, a healthy dose of pressure.