Monday, November 16, 2015

A Week Without Social Media

I struggle with being on my phone too much.
What milennial doesn't?
I got my first phone when I was 11, smart phone when I was...20? And here we are in 2015 and we are all, yes all of us glued to our iphones most of the time.
You see it when you're in line somewhere, driving, on the bus, anywhere, anytime, people are looking at their phones.

I don't think the intention of smart phones was ever to tune out the rest of the world while we tune into our phones, but that is certainly what it has turned in to.
I miss whole chunks of shows I'm watching, conversations I'm "having", and things Felix is saying to me because I'm tuned in to the most recent Starbucks red cup scandal article coming through Facebook. And when it's not Facebook it's Instagram, re-checking every minute and a half to see if someone has posted something new. Someone I probably don't even know in real life and will NEVER meet in real life.
If you stop and think about the ridiculous amount of time spent on our phones, you will probably be embarrassed.
I'm embarrassed.

Because Felix knows when I'm without my phone for 30 seconds and brings it to me. He just knows that Mommies phone is always in her hand.

And I'm sure I'm not the only one who has trouble with boundaries for things. Like food. And social Media. And food. And food again.
It's either all or nothing for me. I don't do well with "ten minutes here" and "only one chocolate today". That's why low carb works so well for me. Because swearing off of sugar all together is easier for me than just eating one bite. But that's another topic for another day when I'm not pregnant and eating more taco bell than I care to admit.

I don't want Felix to think that my phone is more important than he is. He is at the point in his cognitive ability that he knows and understands way more than he can say. So when I'm staring away at my phone, excluding him from my gaze, not listening to his needs, for no other reason than MINDLESS entertaining, I'm sad to think about how it must make him feel. Because social media has become so mindless for me. I don't see much value for it other than communicating with family and making new mom friends.

The political drama I can do without. The celebrity gossip I can do without. The quizzes for whether or not Seth and I's astrological signs mesh together, I can do without, that ship has already sailed.

Of course I enjoy the outlet of chatting with other moms in moms group, or my geeky Harry Potter groups, or the super helpful mom owned businesses group -- but I'm learning that those things MUST have a time and a place -- AKA never when Felix is awake and ONLY from my computer. I'm learning that I won't miss out on things just because I see the notification later in the day. When did the immediacy of information feel like such a necessity in life?

I decided to sign out of Instagram and Facebook from my phone early last week. I deleted the app from my phone, and decided to only use my business Instagram for strictly business posts -- because that is such a helpful way for my business to keep growing, I found it necessary to keep.

You know what has happened in that week?
My house is cleaner.
The laundry isn't sitting as long.
My mind is clearer.
I am remembering more things (and I've always had a terrible short term memory).
I'm getting more orders done in a faster amount of time.
Felix is asking me to play with him more often.
We watch less TV.
I have cooked more meals.
I feel less anxious, less angry, and less fired up about dumb things.
I even opened my Bible for the first time in months, which again, is embarrassing. And that is also another post for another day.

So I think this change is here to stay. I'm trying to find some balance and to give social media a place in my life, but I can't have it be in my top 5 things that matter anymore. I admire people who can ignore their phone buzzing away while they finish chores and spend time with their children -- I hope to be there some day, but for now I'm so happy having that distraction off of my phone and away from my direct attention.

If you struggle with the same reality as I do, I encourage you to try signing out for a week or ten. I guarantee you won't miss it very much.  And when you do let yourself sign in in the evenings after your kids have gone to bed, you will see how little you needed to read the buzzfeed articles or look at people's lunchtime selfies.

LIFE is happening right in front of our eyes. We just need to start looking up from our phones to SEE it.

1 comment:

  1. Jamie,
    This post inspired me. Inspired me to put the phone down more, to look around and focus more on the craziness, the love that my house is exploding with and to focus more on the fun times going on everyday