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November 25, 2018

Social Media Detox

Around this time every year, I go on a social media break.

I learn and take away a little piece of enlightenment from it each time.

One thing that stays the same though, is how challenging it truly is the first week. I find myself wanting to click on an app anytime I have a second to do so; waking up in the morning, lying in bed at night, at work, waiting in line at the store or at a stop light, on a commercial break, when I am eating a meal, or simply when someone is trying to talk to me. I think that is what breaks my heart the most. A live person trying to have a conversation with me, and I wanted to check my social media instead. Rude, right?

This is the current world we live in though, so maybe it’s not rude, maybe this is becoming all we know.

This year though during my social media break I realized that we are not living for us, we are actually living for a “pretend world”, and this world lives in the palm of our hands with a click of a button. In this world, we can portray to be anything we want. We can edit, filter, delete, and enter/exit as we please. We are living for this world to notice and connect with each of us. Do we as a collective want more connection? If this is a connection, is this connection truly healthy?

Why are we using social media to begin with? I think we need to stop what we have been doing and start asking these questions, why? Is this for a platform, a business you want to promote, maybe you simply just want to keep in touch with others, and truthfully social media is great to do that. All of those questions are examples of what might come up for you, but if you take it further you might add; am I using social media to fill a void, am I comparing myself with my online friends, do I constantly check social media to see how many likes I have, if I don’t get those likes how does that make me feel?

With these questions, what comes up for you? Possibly nothing comes up, maybe you truly find social media to be rewarding. For others who don’t feel the same, I feel its time to take a social media break, and began connecting with the real world around you, and within you.

The truth is, sadly most people aren’t who they say they are on social media. They are not this perfect “Valencia” filter with #goodvibesonly. They are raw, real, and have bad vibes on occasion because we are human, and no filter can cover up what human actually is. Humans need specific things to thrive: air, water, food, shelter, and sleep.

When we first wake up in the morning, stretch your body, and grab some water. As you take a sip truly connect with the water by imagining it slowly nurturing every cell, and organ as it passes through in your vessel. While eating food, connect with how your food tastes being mindful of each bite you take. Connect with the home you live in. Observe the way the walls connect with your ceiling and how it forms a perfect place of shelter for you and your family. Lastly, recharge…put your phone down and connect yourself with the thing that helps heal and repair your body and mind. We when we are too busy scrolling on our phones, we often lose sleep. These are some things that we as humans need to really start connecting too.

As humans, we also need to connect live with other human beings. An example, congratulate a person on their accomplishments in person and not just online. Once we stop acknowledge people in person and only online, it’s not about them it becomes about you at that moment. Sadly, our online friends see this, think that in real life you have a great relationship but in reality, there is no connection in person. If we are only connecting online, this creates an inauthentic relationship. Humans have feelings, emotions, and energy that we all put out. The only way to feel or understand what others are feeling is if we experience it live for ourselves. Naturally, when humans are healthy and happy, we want to bond and connect with others. When we are feeling isolated or in distress, we will bond with something that gives a feeling of relief. The opposite of addiction is a connection. Sharing your rawness is what creates that connection, that being said when we are using social media to connect while we are filtering up, our connection then becomes inauthentic. We began to crave what’s not real. We need a live connection, live relationships. We are all just trying to connect with what we can but, maybe social media isn’t quite the best at connecting what’s actually real.

When we finally decide to give ourselves a break from this online world, we began to notice things that we necessarily wouldn’t if we had our phones in our hands. One thing I noticed was that intimate moments started becoming more of moments that needed approval and wanting to be liked. An example, humans take photos of literally everything. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but I think when it starts getting in the way is when we take away the beauty of rawness and replace it with something less genuine. We cover it up with filters and try to impress people who barely exist in our human world. Honestly, I have been there multiple times but once I removed this inauthentic light from my face a new light suddenly appeared. I began to do things for me, and not because I needed approval or a like/love but because it genuinely made me feel good, made me smile, and because I liked it. I believe taking a break from social media should be required. We must put our phones down, and live in the moment, not for social media, not to impress others or prove to people or get likes, but to quite the noise that social media makes and connect with real, raw humans that each of us is. I almost want to give up social media completely, but if I am being real, it does have a lot of advantages to it but, I feel like there comes a time when it can get to be too much and too loud for us humans to handle at times especially when we have our “bad vibe” days. Trust me when I tell you how freeing it feels not to have to constantly click on an app and scroll through things that deep down you can’t authentically connect with because it’s filtered up. Instead of worrying about everyone else’s day, you suddenly began to have more time for your day. Exit off your app put down your phone, and enter a world full of authentic connections with what we as humans truly need to thrive.

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