You probably spend way too much time on your phone.
Okay so we know that sounds obvious, but I bet you don’t realise just how much of life you are missing out on, by being so engrossed by things you’re scrolling through. You will quickly realise that you must have missed out on so many conversations, have certainly missed the plotlines of movies and TV Series, and have not really been present in many situations. Recently, over dinner with a friend she commented on how I was “much better” with my phone usage over the small amount of time I was with her. I felt a bit guilty like I had missed the beauty of life because of my social media addiction. I was so busy with my virtual life; did I miss all of the good stuff?
Concentrating for longer periods of time a problem?
Struggling to do 10 minutes of work without stopping for a completely pointless reason? Find yourself scrolling a social media platform when you’re supposed to be cracking on with a task? Then getting annoyed with yourself for racing towards a deadline? Yep, I was also guilty of this. To the point, I would push deadlines to the last few moments before submitting the print or the artwork, whatever that might be. But now, I seem to have more of a sense of time, things are getting done in a more punctual manner and I feel like I am able to focus better on tasks and give them my full attention.
Are you listening?
How many times have you been mid-conversation, only for someone to pull their phones out and start texting, tweeting, updating their status, stalking someone that just walked passed whilst your pouring your heart out to them? I probably have been guilty of not giving people my full attention and since my social media hiatus, talking to people with full concentration has been something that I’ve realised I have not been doing for some time. I don’t know about you but in the first few months of socialising post-lockdown, I had completely lost my ability to communicate face-to-face, I felt nervous and a bit awkward! Logging out of socials and being present in conversations has meant that I now listen to every word, maintain eye contact, and give appropriate responses, instead of the muttered “yeah”, while talking and communicating with other people.
Create memories, not just pictures for the ‘gram
You’ve all seen it. In a lovely restaurant, perhaps a high profile Michelin star restaurant, or just somewhere that presents super Instagrammable food where the phones come out before anyone DARES to put their cutlery anywhere near the plate of food! How present are we at that moment? Have any of us thought about just capturing a memory in our heads, by taking note of the sights, the sounds, the smells, and the feelings that we have at that moment in time?
I sleep better!
Not sleeping great, or not nodding off till way past midnight was common place in my house and I can only contribute this to my scrolling addiction. How could I not have noticed how much of an impact the social scroll was having on my sleep patterns? How did I expect to fall asleep with such a bright light in front of my face? I won't lie, of a night time now, I am now out like a light. It literally changed my life. Apparently routine is the key to a good night's sleep and well, it's something that’s certainly worked for me!
Logging out forever though isn’t really practical for me, given I’m the owner of a Marketing Agency; it would be foolish of me to step away from a universe that drives so many sales and so much brand awareness and engagement across the globe and for so many of our clients. The points that will stick with me though will be that our worth is not measured in likes, comments, the number of DM’s in your Insta account, or your number of followers on TikTok, it's measured on your ability to love, to be kind and be honest with yourself and those around you that you love. You can have the biggest following on social media, but still go home to an empty house every night and have feelings of loneliness.