Let me start by saying that I love social media. I like feeling connected and, being a news junkie, I love knowing what’s happening the world at every given minute. But, lately, social media seems to have become more about aimlessly scrolling through drivel – and less about being informed.
Young people say that Facebook and Twitter make them feel anxious, depressed and like a failure. I can see what they mean.
My question is: have I become too addicted to “likes” “retweets” and “shares” at the expense of reading a good book or actually watching TV without having my phone in my hand? The answer is probably yes.
There’s a feeling that if you’re not tagging yourself at events or posting pictures of your meal in a restaurant you’re not living. It’s become difficult for me to watch a TV show without checking on Twitter to see what other people are saying about it.
I feel uncomfortable about the time I spend on social media every day – and, worse, that my 9 year old son appears to be inheriting the addiction to electronic gadgets and screen time (although he’s not on social media yet of course). We haven’t needed social media for thousands of years and now it feels like people think your life is over if you don’t have it, which is ridiculous.
So… I’ve decided to switch off the Twitter, Facebook and Instagram alerts on my phone to see how I go. If that doesn’t help I think I’ll delete the apps altogether and just use the platforms when I’m actually in front of a computer screen. If that doesn’t work I’ll close my accounts. (eek – that makes me feel a little queasy).
However, just by saying it I feel a little bit more free from feeling the constant need to check for updates multiple times a day.
Here’s to getting my life back. Wish me luck. And let me know if you’ve managed to do anything similar.