Maybe it’s because I’m an introvert by nature, but do you guys ever feel like your brain has too much information about other people in it?
I went to bed at 8:30 last night (Hi, I’m old) with a pounding headache and was ready to attribute it to pregnancy hormones. I tried to relax by putting in one of my favorite Hallmark Hall of Fame Movies, but turned off the TV when the light from the screen only intensified my headache. Then I thought, I’d play some light music from my phone to lull me to sleep and three notes in I was ready to throw my phone across the room, so I turned everything off and just closed my eyes in the dark, silent room (Ryan was watching TV in the living room at this point). My mind would not shut off as it cycled through a bunch of things I’d seen people say or post on Facebook or Pinterest the past few days…and that’s when it hit me…I HAVE A PROBLEM!
Since all my social media is on my phone, I tend to check it a lot during those little pockets of downtime we all have sprinkled throughout the day, like when I’m waiting at the doctor’s office, waiting in line at Target, or sometimes even while I’m eating breakfast. God forbid I not be doing something every second I’m awake, right?
While social media like Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest are interesting ways to connect to people, some of whom you may never have met if not on social media, and allow you to keep in touch with out of state family and friends, when it really boils down to it, they’ve also become a place for people to air their dirty laundry about relationships (romantic or otherwise), shove their opinions down people’s throats, and either brag or complain about the latest fad diet they’re trying. I know I’ve been guilty of at least a few of those myself (And, I’ll spare you the lecture I gave myself last night about how social media can make you create unhealthy comparisons with others and their lifestyle).
I’ve been told repeatedly by trusted mentors that social media isn’t going away, and I need to be on it to establish my “brand” as a writer. I definitely don’t mean to bite the hand that feeds me. However, that doesn’t mean I need to bombard myself with tons of information about my friends, followers, etc.
I miss real face-to-face conversations and interactions that add value to your life, not give you a pounding headache, and times of quiet solitude when I don’t have access to information at all hours of the day and night.
So, for the next two weeks, that’s what I’m focusing on: Reading lots of good books (I’ll share some in The Tuesday Ten tomorrow), enjoying not knowing every single detail of a person’s day, and taking time to relish in the quiet.
I’ve deleted my Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest apps on my phone and will only be posting blog entries automatically via WordPress to the first two and staying off the three of them all together. I’ll report in a couple weeks with the results of what I hope will be a life-changing and peace-bringing experience.
If you decide to unplug for a while as well, let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear your thoughts about social media overload and also the results of your unplugging experiment as well.
See you tomorrow for The Tuesday Ten!