Preparing for a 24 hour Digital Detox

Since my social media detox...

I have been very intentional with my social media use.

Haven't checked Pinterest or LinkedIn in approximately two weeks. Did sign on Facebook to check MOMs club updates, touch base with friends and colleagues, and share a few pictures of the baby and one achievement. Need to but cannot figure out how to perform a bulk clean up of my friends. Please help.

Deleted my Instagram account since it brought zero value to my life.

Been putting out more meaningful content less frequently thus curbing my social media habit even more.


I am now preparing for a digital detox

That means that I will give up all digital devices (phone, laptop, TV, iPad, etc) for a period of time. Will start with 24 hours, then build on it: 48, and maybe even a 72 hour digital detox. 


Nota Bene

1. What if I need to set an alarm?

Use the travel alarm clock you have. It's old, clunky, and gets the job done.

2. What if I need to take a picture?

Use the Nikon camera you have. No, you may not share the picture right away.

3. What if I get bored? 

Have reading material ready: a stack of magazines that you never have time to read because, yes - too busy reading stuff on your phone. And books, of course.

4. During the detox, place your technology out of sight. Maybe even under a padlock. 

5. What if there is an emergency? Of course, you can use your phone then.

6. Are audiobooks allowed? No.

7. Can I use Alexa to play music or add things to the list? No. 

I leave you with two incredible TED talks about technology addition and being a digital zombie. The time to make a change is NOW. Put down that phone. Log off that Facebook. Turn off that TV.

Society is guiding our children mindlessly towards technology at an alarming rate, without taking a step back to examine the potential impact this could have. For many, technology flooding starts very early in life, and is hard to escape as we become increasingly dependent on technology for even the simplest of tasks.
In a hyperconnected world, where mobile devices have become appendices to our body and people check their social media accounts hundreds of times a day, human interaction is sacrificed daily in favour of digital exchanges.

Social media detox: Day 4

Yesterday was day 4 of my social media detox. I think I fell off the wagon since I went on Pinterest.

Do not remember why I opened the Pinterest app yesterday but I did. I then found myself being sucked into a world of infographics of teaching strategies, baby food, and healthy living. This lasted for about 30 minutes.

This morning... Instead of reading my (very heavy) book, I decided I needed something lighter. Went on Pinterest.

Twenty minutes later pins on Spanish class motivational strategies, how to talk to your kids about mental health, and best purée recipes for a 7 month old were added to my boards. 

#fail 

Some would argue that Pinterest is not really a social media network but I think it is. So I deleted the app.  

Day 4 looked like this:

Yoga in the morning. Hiking with Tony and Lyra in Watchung Reservation. Read. Listen to my audiobook. Help a friend with her resumé. Be Lyra’s mom (ongoing). Garden. Meditate, twice. 

Feelings

Boredom, restlessness. A little anxiety that I am missing out of stuff (but not sure what *stuff*). Annoyance. Craving connection with people. Wanting to reach out to folks I know and care about and realizing: I don’t have their contact information, I can only reach out to them through Facebook! #grrr

Most favorite thing: none.

I miss the stimulation and the excitement social media gives us. With Instagram, I miss the feeling of curiosity you get when you take a peek into people’s lives. With Facebook, I miss the articles and group posts (like my MOMs club and Fulbrighter groups). Don’t really miss Twitter or LinkedIn. 

Don’t miss worthless memes, quotes, pictures of people I don’t know/pets/food/houses/other nonsense. Don’t miss all the political commentary or news. 

Moving forward... 

Today is day 5, and I’m struggling. Feeling the itch. Need to refocus and regroup. Need to remind myself the reason why I am doing this. 

Perhaps I need a different book. Perhaps I need to connect more with people. Maybe spend more time gardening. Find a project. Clean the house again?...

Please note that although you are seeing this post on social media does not mean that I am using it. I am still doing the detox. This post is shared automatically via my blog settings.

Social Media Detox: Day 2

It’s going on day 3 of my social media detox. Yesterday was just as hard as the day before. 

I miss social media like I miss a good friend. I miss it like having something to do. Something light. Something fun.

Something that requires no effort yet something that eats up my time. My energy. My good mood.

So yesterday...

Took care of Lyra. Walked. Read. Worked for a bit. Had a play date with fellow mommies. The house is slowly becoming incredibly clean.

Went to the Jimmy Buffett concert with Tony. Felt angry when I was at the concert and couldn’t share any pictures.   

Other emotions... Annoyance, anxiety, restlessness. Boredom. Pride and satisfaction.

Most favorite thing for now: how productive I am. I catch myself spending my time on things I care about.

On 07/11 when my detox is complete, I will open my accounts and will have all those notifications waiting for me. A surge of adrenaline. So much to catch up on, check in, say hello, re-engage. I catch myself that I am looking forward to commenting and looking at updates.

What do I miss the most?... 

  • Miss the MOMs club updates on Facebook.
  • Don’t really miss Instagram. Don’t miss Twitter.
  • Miss articles and links on psychology, self-care, parenting.
  • Don’t miss meaningless posts, memes, quotes, pictures of food, pictures of pets.
  • Don’t miss seeing people on vacation in fabulous spots like Thailand or Antarctica. Slowly feeling more at peace with not seeing the updates. 
  • Don’t miss the “Let’s compare my life with yours and see whose is better” game. 

Today is day 3 of detox.  

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Please note that although you are seeing this post on social media does not mean that I am using it. I am still doing the detox. This post is shared automatically via my blog settings.

Social Media Detox- First Observations

Day 1 was hard. My detox started yesterday at 3pm, and by 3:30 I was roaming around the house looking for stuff to do. I felt restless and anxious. I felt like something -esential- was missing.

A feeling of forgetting your wallet somewhere and being annoyed about it.   

Started cleaning. I throughly cleaned the second floor of the house, vacuumed, mopped. Dusted. Did laundry. 

Tony and I found a movie. Throughout the movie I kept getting the *itch* - you know the one. The itch that makes you reach for your phone and check what friends or strangers are up to. Supress the *itch* without scratching. Continue with the movie. Repeat. 

Anxious in bed. I love to read before bed. But in reality, I don’t really *read* before bed. I check social media before bed. So bedtime is hard. Last night I actually had to do what I say I do: read. So I anxiously read. Feel the itch, again. Fireworks start...

My brain:

“I wonder what folks are up to tonight... It’s July 4th for chrissake!! Imagine all the cool stuff you’ll see, like, comment on! Fireworks! American flag sponge cake! Babies and cats dressed in red, white, and blue!! Just a peek. Thirty seconds on Instagram, what the harm?”

Regroup. Remind myself what I am doing and why.

“No. You promised yourself. One week. So, you’ll miss some updates, big deal. Keep reading.”

So I kept reading.  

I read, uninterrupted, for about 40 minutes. Made a good dent in my book. Felt proud. 

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Please note that although you are seeing this post on social media does not mean that I am using it. I am still doing the detox. This post is shared automatically via my blog settings.