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It’s a beautiful summer morning and I’m sitting here basking in the quietness of my living room, hearing only the sounds of my little pug snoring away on my lap. It’s a precious moment that’s hampered by one thing – Facebook.
Facebook is now the place where good times go to die.
If Facebook were a cocktail party, it would be a very fun one. Everyone would be complaining about politics and gun violence. The opinions would be polarizing and no doubt there would be a few fist fights and inevitably someone would knock over the Cheetos bowl. Whatever happened to the good old days when we shared cat videos and what we had for lunch?
As one of my Facebook friends posted yesterday, “Facebook has become unwelcomed company.”
And then there’s Instagram…
Instagram has a way of making me feel bad about my less-than-perfect life. I tend to follow my primary interests – fitness, food and home decor, but when But then InstaStories came out, and all of a sudden, I had a new way to follow people in a more authentic, “behind the scenes” way that wasn’t quite so staged. Cool! But eventually, everyone got perfect there too.
Alongside the boring perfection, I found I was also spending 1 -2 hours a day trolling people’s stories, most of which are nothing more than commercials for Nordstrom sweaters, skinny jeans and the latest protein shake. “Swipe up and buy!” has become the new way to consume Instagram (and everything else). And as we all know, the more you consume, the more problems (aka anxiety) you welcome into your life.
Where this Social Obsession is Leading Us
Then I read this article about how we’re obsessed with distraction. The author’s story rang far too true for me. I can barely get through a book anymore. I listen to audiobooks more than anything else, but my attention is always half-assed as I’m often shopping, cleaning, working out or trolling Facebook at the same time.
I knew this morning that it was time for a change. I recalled a study I read a few weeks ago that showed a marked improvement in happiness levels for people who went on a Facebook diet for one week.
I need to go on that diet.
So I’ve taken measures to keep myself from going on Facebook and Instagram. I’ve deleted the app from my phone and downloaded an app on my MacBook that blocks Facebook from my computer. This will at least keep me from my mindless return to the website.
I’ll let you know how things go as the week progresses. I’m hopeful that my forced reprieve from the website will help me regain my sense of focus, enable me to do the things I love to do (write and read) and perhaps make me a little happier in the process.
I’m pretty sure I know how this will go – I’ll hate it for the first few days, then I’ll sink into the new normal, then I’ll never want to go back. That’s how it went with my minimalist challenge and subsequently, the shopping ban I did, too.