Social media is a beautiful tool for connectivity and I love the opportunity I have to share parts of my life on public platforms. However, there is great joy still found in taking a reprieve every now and then.
Welcome to February. It has been a while since my last post so I wanted to catch you all up with me. November and December were full of holiday fun and travels. I spent time in my small Tennessee hometown; visited Austin, Texas for the first time for New Year’s Eve; and spent time with many people who have become my new community in Dallas.
Then came January. I had been in church one Sunday and recalled the pastor mentioning how often we want God to speak to us and that voice usually comes in a whisper; however, more often than not — we have too much noise blocking out His voice. I was not necessarily looking for a word from God, but I did feel the need to step away from socials as they had me in a state of restlessness and unnecessary brain fog is the best way I can sum it up.
I had become more adept at grabbing my phone when I woke up and check my feed rather than my Bible. All that being said, I wanted to gain a greater sense of clarity and peace from not consistently consuming media throughout my day. What a difference this shift has made in my mood, energy, and moreover how I spend my days.
Takeaways from my social media fast
More peace and less anxiousness – Did you know our brain processes over 70,000 thoughts a day? What we feed our mind can shape the narratives we play in our head. The level of calm and clarity being off social media provided was breathtaking. It is so easy to feel this need to be further along in our journey’s based on the perceptions of those around us. I initially thought I would have this FOMO (fear of missing out) by not knowing what was going on in the lives of those around me but quickly realized I was content just where I was. If I happened to miss any truly “big moments”, my friends and loved ones would simply communicate with me directly by picking up the good ole phone or sending me a quick text. Do not let what is coming or may-not-come tomorrow rob you of today. Keep your feet planted in the now. Easier said than done, I know.
More time spent in the present – Social media at times can become performative and very “look at me” focused. At least that is the case for me as a recovering perfectionist. This month off the grid I allowed myself to simply be in the moment. Don’t get me wrong, I still took pictures/videos to have memories to look back on; however, I gave myself permission to not feel an invisible pressure to post or curate content for the approval of others. I simply spent this month creating memories at my own pace. Give yourself permission to go at your own pace. Protect the moments that are special to you. Everything is not for everyone to see. There is beauty in being unplugged and a sense of ease that comes with it as well.
More authentic human connection – Social networking sites can create a false sense of closeness to people who are not truly invested in your life ~ rather they are simply spectators on the sidelines. Albeit this is not a bad thing, but can lead to relationships that are not rooted in true, genuine connection. Life can become busy and social networks can easily become an opportunity to check out of being intentional with connecting with our people simply because we can see a highlight reel of how they present themselves to the world. With my hiatus, I spent more time connecting with friends through text and phone calls, scheduling brunches, participating in group outings, and traveling to spend time with loved ones. I am fairly social by nature but on the flip side, I noticed a shift in my friends taking more intentional efforts to check-in and set up time to connect with me since I was not as readily accessible by being off socials.
Social media is a beautiful tool for connectivity and I love the opportunity to share parts of my life on public platforms. However, I challenge you to disconnect from whatever may be taking up more space than necessary in your life. I plan to incorporate a monthly social media day where I simply disconnect to reconnect with what is right in front of me. The world keeps going on whether you are present on the platforms or not. Check in with yourself and make sure you are providing your body what it needs. For me, I was seeking a renewed spirit and this break allowed just that.
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