I deleted social media on Saturday, after I arrived in Cancun, and I feel as light as a feather. I could give credit to the massage that I got upon arrival, but I need to speak on this for a moment.
I am not shitting on social media. I am aware of what a useful tool it is for keeping people connected, finding new interests, and spreading awareness. However, I can’t help but feel that I’m under a spell when I’m using it. I notice myself closing the app and then, somehow, reopening it two seconds later.
I was off of social media for a while. I can’t remember if it was one year or two, but during that time I didn’t feel such a strong connection to my phone. Sometimes I didn’t know where my phone was! I can’t even imagine that these days. If I can’t find my phone, I panic now. I wonder if I’ve missed something. A text. A DM. Someone’s life event. A coupon for something I don’t need, but I have a coupon!!
The mindlessness, the longing for it, and the muscle memory that has been created as a result of it (opening my phone and going straight to Instagram, even if I just picked it up to check the time) make me feel like I’m succumbing to the evil empire’s master plan to turn humans into zombies.
How about the advertisements? I say something and, before I know it, I have an ad in my feed about raw dog food. Sometimes I click on the ads! Sometimes I buy things! And I think to myself – would I have even known that existed if it weren’t for social media? And is that a good or bad thing?
I think I’ve gotten better at not comparing my life to other people’s lives. The beginning stages of my social media usage were rough, though. I couldn’t help but notice that everyone was in better shape than me, more financially stable than me, and ten times as adventurous. “How come I’m not vacationing every other week?”
The point is that maybe we can all take conscious breaks from the constant stimulation. Maybe we can finally read that book, take that walk, or join that class. Maybe we can look up from our phones (not yet, let me finish) and notice the beauty all around us. I’m not talking about ocean views. I’m talking about the people in our lives that make it better and won’t be around forever. My message from Cancun is…stop and smell the roses. Participate in life today. And don’t don’t do it for the gram. Do it for the memories.