As expected I’m WOKE after a week off from social media and I’m here to tell you what I’ve learned.
There’s way less to do on my phone
This has been the biggest adjustment. I open my phone feeling like it will be a good distraction but once I remember that I’m OFF THE GRID, I don’t really have a lot to do. In the first few days it felt like disappointment but now it sort of feels like relief.
As I hoped, I’m filling the time by going to bed earlier, reading, playing and more guitar and chess. This feels like a plus.
I don’t have FOMO from Twitter memes and viral videos
This has been the second biggest adjustment – not knowing new memes or seeing viral videos. Pardon My Take will reference one or two an episode, and before I always knew what they were talking about.
They said last week a meme of picnic tables and a video of a girl hitting her dog. It felt comical that those were like… trends that people would be up to date on. I thought I’d feel left out not knowing these, but I don’t. I also don’t miss the negativity of Twitter.
This is cliche, but there is a greater sense of ‘living in the moment’
I saw a rainbow last Thursday beautifully cast above the Delaware River, probably the best rainbow I’ve ever seen. My first thought was “I bet thousands of people in Philly are snapping / instagramming this right now”. And with that, the ‘joy’ isn’t actually looking at the rainbow, but sending the picture.
It’s self-righteous to say something like ‘I enjoyed it more than those people’, because I don’t think that’s true. But it’s nice to not worry about trying to get a good picture or video, and instead to just look at it yourself.
I’m behind on the news
I check CNN, ESPN, and news.google for my news consumption but that’s really it. If I don’t actively check them then the news just passes me by.
Snapchat was actually useful
The best example is the Ursinus track group that I was in. I don’t see those people all that frequently, but felt connected by being in the group. If I stay off of Snapchat, those friendships will fade.
Facebook stalking / Twitter news videos
Facebook stalking is something I did more than I realized, since I’ve wanted to look up multiple people the last week and couldn’t. Maybe this should be under the ‘good’ category.
Twitter news videos are another. A lot of news sites embed Twitter videos and without a login, I can’t see some of them. So it’s not even for the binging purpose, but to actually see something I’m interested in, and I can’t.
Where to from here?
There’s not much urge to get back on any of these. Certainly not Facebook, a small amount Instagram, and slightly more for Snapchat and Twitter.
I could do without Facebook and Instagram entirely. Twitter though, I might make a burner and just follow sports / news stuff. I’ll probably bring back Snapchat soon just because it’s not that detrimental in the first place.
But for the time being, I’ll stay off. I’m going to keep this going until I want to stop. It’s probably not for everybody, but it’s worth a try.