You guys don’t know how excited I am writing this post.
So I took this brave step last week Saturday, precisely 11th March 2017, to do a social media detox. I mean, five minutes before that decision, I never thought about making such a bold move. All I wanted was to stop making excuses for how lame the last two months had been regarding the ruthless execution of my goals.
So I told myself, something has got to give, and it was not hard knowing what those things were.
I went ahead to delete my social media apps, namely (in the order to which I was addicted): Whatsapp, Twitter, and Instagram.
I also uninstalled a gaming app, Clash of Clans. If you know this game, you’ll understand.
You will notice that there is no Facebook there. Go figure.
So what happened after I uninstalled them one after the other?
I won’t even lie. It was hard af for the first two days. The following Sunday was not that bad because it was a busy day. But Monday got me for real. The need to tweet and binge was quite strong at the inception. Nevertheless, I achieved something amazing that Monday – I wrote again, after like two months of excuses. I also followed up on re-enrolling for and attending an online class I had been putting off. Mehn, the exhilaration.
The next day came. I did the same. Wrote and ‘attended class’. By Wednesday, I felt in control of my life, what psychologists call an internal locus of control. I was learning how to let go of all the noise from social media. I wasn’t the kid on the block who had all the latest gists springing from Twitter but yeah, I was and I am still fine.
Ever heard of FOMO, otherwise known as the Fear of Missing Out? Listen, it’s not real. You ain’t missing jackshit. In fact, nobody really cares if you went on a hiatus. A few people may wonder where you have been but the true test of that friendship is they giving a call, which if you are wondering, no one called me.
So let’s be real, don’t get disillusioned by social media. The follower count, engagement, notifications are all bullshit. It is a trap you may be a victim of if you don’t manage yourself well. My productivity doubled, my focused increased, I spent more time in the moment, read several queued up articles in my Pocket app – all within a week out of social media.
Just before I left the office yesterday, I re-installed them but did not sign in. I am not even jumpy about making an entry. I would have continued this challenge save for my friends and co-workers’ constant need to reach me, especially on Whatsapp. It is just interesting how that app has now become a part and parcel of our everyday communication. Bravo Jan Koum and Brian Acton!
As I complete my Social media detox challenge, I encourage you to do the same. You won’t know how good it feels to not have to respond to mentions and instant messages for a while until you give it a try as well. It will cost you a little compared to the psychological benefits you will enjoy from the exercise.
I hope to hear your story as well.
Image credit: The Odyssey Online