Facebook, a social networking platform founded by Mark Zuckerberg has around 2.2 billion monthly active users as of January 2018 (source Wikipedia). I joined Facebook in October 2007, and I was compulsively posting every minute detail of my life. From birthday wishes to photo albums with my friends and family.
I joined Facebook because you had to be on it or there was FOMO! Over the next few years, I was on Facebook for the sole reason that social media was now my bread and butter. I was a social media marketer, creating Facebook pages for clients and writing social media posts to grab the user’s attention.
I was addicted to it – followed thousands of brands, tried and tested every app and developed app ideas myself. I didn’t realize it was seeping into my life and taking control of the person that I was.
Being into social media marketing, I was having sleepless night wondering about the number of likes on a client’s page or how I could increase the interaction on a particular post. I was researching social media apps and analytics platforms to make the most of the medium.
Apart from work life, I used Facebook to share every damn thing about my personal life. I lost my mother to Cancer in 2012. I used it as a medium to grieve, to share my feelings and sometimes even to talk to my mother.
My friends and family would reply to every post and picture, sending across their heartfelt condolences. But that was it. I never met any of my “friends” nor did they meet me.
I gradually began drifting away from the medium. But was on it only for the occasional sharing of my mother’s recipes (My sisters and I created a Facebook page where we share my Mum’s recipes.).
Here’s how staying away from Facebook restored my life:
I got back my sanity: I was not losing it on the number of likes, shares and comments. A sense of peace prevailed over me. And I was able to have a good night’s sleep.
I was able to devote my time to other interests: Facebook was no more dominating my life. I was pursuing my hobbies and exploring other areas of interest. I returned to blogging (which I had explored much before Facebook got me hooked) and posting reviews of my favorite movies and books – they made me so much happier.
I stayed away from comparisons: Facebook and the world of social media make us live a virtual world that we aspire for. A materialistic world with a luxury vacation, dining in the finest restaurants, and branded possessions. It’s never worth it – trying to live somebody else’s life or publicizing your personal life.
I got back to my journal: Writing a journal is what I have always done since my school days. It’s a place where I get to share my innermost feelings without being judged or commented on. And most of all, the joy of writing with a pen is out of this world 🙂
I was able to keep my personal life private: It’s daunting to post your personal life and reveal so much of you to the world that you sometimes begin to question your purpose. Anonymity is a privilege, a gift that we should learn to accept. Opening your life to the world can be stressful as it comes with negativity, unrealistic expectations, and unforgiving comparisons.
If you’re spending too much time on social media or compulsively scrolling through your feed, it’s time to go on a social media detox.
Did you enjoy a wonderful vacation in Hawaii? Are you a mother? Try keeping these lifetime experiences private. Go offline. Take a break from social media. Shut out the noise. Reconnect with yourself and your family.
Let us know if you have ever taken a break from any of the social media platforms and how it has helped you live in the moment.
Erin shows overscheduled, overwhelmed women how to do less so that they can achieve more. Traditional productivity books—written by men—barely touch the tangle of cultural pressures that women feel when facing down a to-do list. How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.