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What I Learned By Taking A Social Media Break
Because of technology, we have everything we want at our fingertips. You want to know something… just google it. Need some photo inspiration… hop on Instagram. Need something delivered… get on Amazon. Need a craft, home decor, or recipe idea… go to Pinterest. You name it and it’s there. And as nice as it is to have all this, it can quickly hit the point of overload. Which is why I took a social media break during my week at the cabin.
A Week Without Social Media
**The photos in this blog post are from my vacation. If you don’t enjoy seeing fish, I am sorry but I grew up fishing and it is part of my life.**
I grew up going to a “resort” in Dent, Minnesota. Eight cabins right on the lake and for this outdoor loving girl it was a perfect adventure every year. Growing up before cell phones and major internet access, I learned how to enjoy nature and its beauty without distraction.
Words cannot express how thankful I am to have grown up that way. A time where the biggest social media site was MySpace. Which I was not allowed on. Where the internet opened my eyes to the world but being on it meant the landline didn’t work. Anyone remember those days?
Vacation brought me back to the memories of life before social media and smartphones. My cell phone had only one bar and would fail to call anyone 90% of the time while at the cabin.
So instead of worrying about the outside world, I spent time with family and friends. In the morning I fished and spent time watching the sunrise and listened to the loons. The lake called my name in the afternoon and I laid on my new duck floaty soaking in the sun. At night I played cards and laughed until my stomach hurt.
I never realized how much I missed life without distraction. The worries of the world and the pressures of social media faded away. Taking pictures for memories and not for likes. (My pictures actually turned out better because of it.) The depressing stories that plagued my timelines didn’t seem as worrying. Life somehow went back to the simple days that I once lived.
Now that I am home I have taken the memories of my simple life and use them to use social media in a good way. I want to inspire you all to find happiness. To control the things that you can and not worry about the things you can’t. The are many pluses to social media but there are also many cons.
What I Learned By Taking A Social Media Break
Now I would like you to think back to a time without your iPhone and internet. Before social media took over or even back to the MySpace days. When life seemed simple.
What do you miss?
Would you want to go back?
How has social media changed your life?
Going back up to the cabin, where my cell phone doesn’t work and getting internet access is too much work opened my eyes to the way I used to live. Carefree and unbothered by the problems I can’t control. These are some things I learned during my break.
I want to use my online voice to help inspire. Like and views mean nothing to me if what I post doesn’t help someone.
I want to inspire people. I want someone to look at me and say “Because of you, I didn’t give up.”
So my message to you is to stop trying to impress others with the things that you own. Begin inspiring them by the way that you live.
I Cannot Control Everything
I cannot control…
How others treat each other.
How others treat me.
How others feel.
But I can control…
How I treat others.
How I treat myself.
How I think/feel.
There is so much that I cannot control, but there are things that I can. I can decide how I spend my time, who I interact with, who I share my body and life and money and energy with. I can select what I can read and eat. I can choose how I’m going to handle the unfortunate circumstances in my life-whether I will see them as curses or opportunities. I can choose my words and the tone of voice in which I speak to others. And most of all, I can choose my thoughts.
Be Present and Stay in the Moment
My week without social media and the internet was quite sobering. I had no clue how much I was missing all around me with my nose in my phone all the time.
A week of laughing and having fun without distraction is exactly what I needed. The stress of capturing every moment faded. I felt the pressure of being perfect on social media lift away. Rather than capturing every moment, I’ve been posting the moments that really move me. I’m finding myself living more of my life rather than documenting/sharing it.
It’s Easy to Loose Yourself
Once again I lost sight of my purpose. (Getting sick of hearing that yet) Instead of posting for myself and my mission, I started to post for others. Forgetting that the people who first found me followed and liked my posts for me.
Ultimately, I need to do this for me. Not for the likes or features. Although they’re fun, those feelings fade quickly. I need to create for me and the inspiration of helping others.
As with anything in life, too much (even of a good thing) is harmful. So the way I approach it will be different.
My notifications are turned off. I’ll post for me and to inspire others. And I’ll remember to put down the phone, step out of the social media world, and back into my own beautiful, busy (and often crazy) world.