Not that I’m speaking for everyone amongst my age group, and actually I’m still surprised at how many people I know my age that don’t use social media. But nevertheless there is still an extremely high percentage that use social media – almost excessively. As someone who’s average screen time was 9 hours. 9 HOURS?!?
That was a disgustingly shocking amount of time wasted on my phone. I cant even really tell you want ‘productive’ rubbish I would spend that much time on, but honestly it would just be endless scrolling of Instagram and never endling liking or updating people on my life, which frankly, I now think… who cares?!
I decided I was a little tired of being ‘present’ on social media. I didn’t want to update people on my life. I didn’t want to see peoples lives that were sun kissed skin and perfect poses in paradise. Instagram *really* can be a place of hell, especially if mental health problems are something you struggle with, as they are for me. It is a breeding ground for exposed mental health issues. As much as I think there is good from social media, the bad can equally outweigh this. I appreciate, I may use Instagram very differently to many peers. As I want to promote the world of Simply Martha, I feel I have to invite strangers into the creation I have made to stay connected to me. Even so, I felt really run down from the constant refresh of the home page. I even felt resentful of some of my favourite strangers online, but I have no real obligation to feel loyal to them? But that’s the power force of social media can have on people. The obsession to constantly stay updated and keep on top of every stranger you follow. I feel consumed.
From someone who spends 9 hours on their phone (mostly for social media usage) to then taking that out… I had so much more time. Honestly, it was the weirdest thing but I got so much more done with my day. Productivity was high and my commitment to saying on track with tasks actually made me get them done faster, I enjoyed them more and could do even more. It was like living a new life.
As well, blocking social media gave me a clarity again about things in my life that are not digital. I’ve always been someone who appreciates little things in life, but with my phone switched off, I saw way more to smile about. Noticing my walk, hearing the floor creek as I move, watching aeroplanes fly. Simplicity of just everyday becomes more exciting when you can focus on every aspect of something new around you, rather than my earphones in, Facebook reloading and the bell of new notifications.
I don’t think everyone can relate to maybe the extreme usage I was using my phone. Partly I could blame to fact I am a ‘blogger’ so maybe it is due to work as well. So why does this generation need a digital detox? I think it’s actually more of a reality check.
Seriously, look up and beyond the floor where our screen is. I’ve missed living. I mean actually living without feeling the need to make it a digital memory. Taking pictures is lovely, of course, but sometimes lets just be… there. In the moment. Persevere it for your mind. Social media wasted a lot of time. So much so, I’ve changed how I’m going to view, create and make content for social media. Because it scares me that some people may be wasting their time looking at my time.
I’m going to make less ‘useless’ content. Stories that have no real meaning or are just time wasting for both creator (me) and watchers. No need to share everything that is happening in my day, because frankly, I don’t care to post it, and therefore I’m sure you don’t want to watch either. In fact, stories I am going to reduce significantly. Even on a personal level as a viewer myself. Why do I want to waste 20 minutes watching someone talk about what they’re doing for the day – when I should be focusing on mine? It seems almost mad that I would be more interested in listening to an online stranger than caring about my life first. Priorities. Another thing I will start with throwing away social media a little more. Seasons of time are short and sweet. University will soon be over, and as much as I love avoiding a deadline or two, I need to start prioritising the small opportunities that are universities, or Simply Martha work, or meeting friends. Social media isn’t going anywhere, but life does pass by if we don’t watch it.
Digital detoxes sound quite extreme but I think very much needed. I know that social media isn’t the be all and end all platform to make me look cool, or seem interesting. And I need to remember that life happens without the picture to prove it. You don’t have to speak it to keep it precious. Memories are still beautiful without needing to share it.
Make memories, life and happy mental health status rather than followers, shares or posts for people to judge. Be the own ‘like’ you wait for.
Simply Martha x