5 day social media detox

Monday, 1 October 2018

Over the years I’ve sort of developed an unhealthy relationship with social media. I’ve always spent so much time on Twitter and Instagram, mindlessly scrolling through feeds. This summer I grew tired of being so focused on social media. I noticed that I only used them when I was bored, when I was somewhere alone and anxious, when I needed to find something specific,  or when I felt like I ‘needed’ to share something. That’s why I decided to start using it in a different way. I spent my days doing things that were more fulfilling than scrolling through people’s perfectly curated feeds. However, I still used both apps a lot, because I didn’t want to ‘miss out’ on anything.

But I didn’t want this. So what if I don’t know what this person is doing right this second? So what if I go offline for a while? Life still goes on, and whatever I miss will still be there when I come back. And I still have people whom I can text. I also grew tired of all the negativity online. That and the ‘pressure’ to post ‘quality’ content was too much for me. Also, I’d just got back to uni and life was just really overwhelming, and exhausting. So I decided to take a break from everything for a few days. I deleted both apps (Twitter and Instagram) on Thursday and will get them back today (Monday).

It was hard at first. I kept unlocking my phone and going to tap the apps but they weren’t there. On my commutes, instead of scrolling through Twitter, I challenged myself to look up and notice people, not in a creepy way. I’ve never been a fan of public transport, especially when I am alone, because it makes me anxious. I always refuse to look up in case someone is looking at me, judging me; that’s why I always turned to social media. But nobody is looking, most people are on their phones or reading. I also downloaded news apps and Memrise, to keep learning Danish. Basically, instead of reading what people are up to or reading their complaints, I educated myself.
These few days I’ve felt a lot better; like there were fewer voices in my head which was great. Because there’s already too much in my head. These days I’ve focused more on me. I’ve written a lot just for me. I’ve figured out what I want in my life right now and I’ve set some future goals. I’ve also meditated a lot which helps with my anxiety, more than I thought it ever would. I’ve done more things that fill me instead of living vicariously through other people’s lives. But I do want to come back to social media because I kinda grow attached to people, even if I don’t talk with them, it feels like I know them and I wanna know if they’re okay. BUT, from now on, I’ve promised myself to use the apps consciously, just like these 5 days, but check the apps once or twice a day. Basically, I wanna maintain the habits I’ve picked up over this short period of time but also go online for a bit. I want to post whatever I want without feeling like I’m gonna be judged (this has always put me off of posting too much or expressing myself the way I want). I want to be more positive online. I want to engage with people in a positive way. I want to not let the negativity get to me and follow people that bring positive things to me.

This was one big ramble and I don’t know if I’ve expressed myself well but still, I’ve learned a lot these past few days and I feel a lot better with myself for having done this. I am proud of myself.

Have you ever deleted your social media apps?

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