My Social Media Diet – Part 4

I was recently a guest on the Art Condition podcast. In that episode, we briefly talked about taking time off from social media and what it brought me. Because people seemed interested and I had more to say on the topic, I started writing with the intent of making a Twitter thread on my experiment. It turned out to be QUITE a read – especially for our easily-distracted social media attention spans. So I divided it up into 4 easy-peasy short reads, and this is the last part!

Read part 3 here!

Ok, I’m convinced. I want to try abandoning social media or at least containing my time. What do I do?

In that case, I do want to encourage you to reflect on how much you need to be on social media multiple times a day. Really sit and think. What is containing your time on social media going to bring you, and what might it cost you? Next, experiment. Try either limiting your time or abandoning social media altogether for a month, whatever you feel comfortable with. Then, analyze! And I mean with data too, not just emotionally. These are some questions you can ask yourself:

  • How much less time did you spend on your phone or behind your laptop? 
  • How many books did you read? 
  • How many games did you play?
  • How much more time did you get to spend with your loved ones? 
  • How much more did you get done at work? Were you able to finish with more time left before your deadline? Were you able to write more words for your book, or did you have to edit less out?
  • How long were you able to focus at a time when starting out, and when finishing your experiment month?
  • How did you feel at the beginning of the month, and at the end? (I recommend to write down a few short sentences every day, to be able to read back)

The biggest jolt at how much social media has crept into our lives is when Joby asked me on the podcast, “but how do you fill your time without your phone?”. My thoughts flashed back to my time without a smartphone and social media – I created my facebook account in the summer before I went to college, at 17. I know I was never bored, and played games, watched TV, read books, drew, studied, and spent time with my loved ones, just like I’m doing now. I just think it’s a matter of getting rid of the addiction and reclaiming my attention span.

What’s your relationship with social media? Are you going to try a hiatus?