In today’s world, it’s hard to escape technology. It’s everywhere you look, at every corner you turn, and constantly on your mind. Or it was always on mine. That was why I decided that I needed a little break from social media. Because let’s face it, I wouldn’t be able to survive without technology. No social media? That is definitely more doable. And yes, I included blogging as part of social media… 😉
I’m not going to lie, before I took this hiatus from my online “duties”, I was a bit addicted to Instagram. It ruled my life. I would spend hours on the weekends taking and editing photos to post. There are alarms on my phone reminding that it’s time to post. I would spend time coming up with a caption and even more time “interacting” with other users. And my “interacting”, I mean I would spend an hour or two scrolling through #bookstagram and liking every. single. photo. I take that back, liking every appropriate photo. And then I would spend even more of my time commenting and replying to comments. Needless to say, Instagram was very time-consuming and it kind of ruled my life.
Forget Instagram, because at least I was going somewhere with it. My time and effort were being rewarded by getting more and more likes and followers. Something I took pride in, which is interesting because I haven’t really paid much attention to the amount of followers on this blog. That’s a good thing or else I’ll be really sad right now. Because the number of followers on this blog has been more or less stagnant.
Speaking of the blog. The real reason why I’ve been on hiatus for the last month is totally because I wanted to take a break from social media and spend more time with my friends who I might never see again after this summer. Yep, that was definitely why I haven’t been publishing any posts. It wasn’t at all because I kept running into a wall and could not find the motivation to write posts or write posts that I would be happy with. That was definitely not why I’ve been AWOL.
Eh, Twitter wasn’t a really factor in my decision to take a step back. I haven’t been regularly active on that platform for a year or two. My Twitter feed was basically automatic tweets, tweets from Twitter parties, or me whining about something random. 🙁
Some of you are probably thinking something along the lines of “No social media? Are you nuts?”. The answer to that question is yes… and no. Social media had been driving me nuts so I knew I needed a break from it. If not to improve my mental health and spend more time socializing in person, then to prove to myself I can do it. I can, in fact, live without social media. That I’m not addicted to it and that it doesn’t rule my life. And now that I’m done with my break, I think I’m a little less crazy than I was before. A little.
The break went pretty well. And deciding to take it has been one of my best decisions this year. And we’re talking about the same year that I decided which college I wanted to go to in the fall. Taking a break from social media and blogging let me spend more time with my friends face to face. It gave me more time to enjoy my last month of high school and leave it with no regrets. It also gave me more time to read and relax. It turns out, I can watch about four TV episodes (without commercials) in the same amount of time I would have normally spent on Instagram in one night. Yikes. And that’s not including the amount of time I spend typing out a post for this blog and then deleting everything and then rewriting it, and then deleting it again. o.O
Staying away from social media was a lot easier then I thought it would be. Once I got into the routine of not using it, I didn’t really feel the need to check my phone to see if I got any more Instagram followers. Or check my blog more comments. Or even really be on it. It was nice. It was peaceful. It was totally worth all the Twitter parties I missed.
I feel so refreshed after this break. I have (obviously) conquered my writer’s block and am back to posting on this blog. I’m back on Instagram too, but with less pressure to post constantly than before. Because what’s the point? To get more followers? When did we turn back time and how did I revert back to myself from freshman year? The one that only cared about follower count? I’m more mature now… I think? I hope. It felt like a huge weight has been taken off my shoulders during my break from social media. And after my break, the weight is still nonexistent. I’m back and more motivated and inspired than ever.
Moving forward, I want to keep the effects of taking this break in mind. This break taught me a lot of things I subconsciously already knew but needed to be reinforced. Like the idea that when things get too much, it’s okay to take a step back and breathe. That when you feel like you aren’t getting anywhere, you don’t have to “work harder” or scrap the project. That ideas and motivation will come with time. Hopefully, next time I feel overwhelmed or feel like I’m not making any progress, I’ll remember this little experiment.
What do you think?
Would you ever take a break from the internet/social media?