UnpluggedCNY is not protesting technology, in any way. In fact, each member of our group is very technologically inclined and believes it is a necessity in today’s society.
We strive to define the line of when technology enhances people and relationships and communication, and when it destroys them; where it helps people grow and when it enables them, consumes them, and prevents them from growing.
I could go on and on with examples, but that is not why I am writing today…….
I’m writing to share my journey of unplugging from social media. I’m “unplugging” for 40 days, starting Wednesday, February 14th. Why am I doing this?
I’m an extremely busy person- running from place to place; however, it’s not the running around that has me exhausted. I have a very deep mental exhaustion, that not even sleep can seem to heal, and I blame social media.
The information that I take in throughout the day, via social media, on top of everything else I am doing, has me completely mentally drained.
Take a minute to REALLY process what I’m saying……
Let’s say you get up and bring your kids to school in the morning.
You get to work, work 3-4 hours, then during your lunch break you have a doctor’s/ or car appointment.
You have been running and going all day and now you are sitting in a waiting room.
It is the first time you have really had a moment to yourself- where you are not expected to do anything but sit and wait…….. What do you do?
Think about being in a waiting room, anywhere, what are people doing most of the time?? They are on their phone/tablet…..And that is really the norm- you don’t even think twice about it and you probably do the same thing- I know I do.
You have your first “real break” of the day, a chance to breathe, close your eyes, relax, and be at peace,
but no one, myself included, embraces these types of breaks. Instead, we log on to (insert fave. app: FB, Twitter).
Now, think about how much stimulation, whatever you are looking at, is giving your brain. You’re switching from one post to another to another- various topics that stimulate personal thoughts and emotions with each and every one….. Looking at 50- 100 posts each time your scroll.
During “breaks”- people are putting their brain on a full speed treadmill, digesting way too much info. way too fast. Think about when you eat too fast, you get a stomach ache or heartburn.
When you consume information, faster than you can consume anything else- it is your brain that is getting burned out….. You use your brain to see, to drive, to talk, to remember what you’re doing and to learn.
When you’re on the internet- it is like a 10k for your brain. When does your brain get to take a break?
And THAT IS WHY I am blaming social media for my exhaustion and engaging in this break for 40 days. I am “unplugging” to give my brain a break.
My first thoughts, as I am only a day away from this “unplug”:
- Can I actually do it??? I know I’m addicted to social media and scrolling, when I’m bored. Do I actually have the self-control to make myself – TAKE A BREAK!?!
- Are my “internet family/friends” going to notice, or worse, be upset, about my cyber absence?
How is it going to affect my self-esteem if it isn’t even noticed at all?(I’m not a big “poster” in the first place- so this is a pretty legit thought/concern?)How many people will “unfriend me” or stop following me?How many people will resent me because they think I am trying to “make a statement”- when I am really just taking a personal leave of absence in an attempt to cure my mental exhaustion?
- How am I going to know what’s going on in the community, in the world, with my “friends”?
- What if I miss out on something super important because I didn’t check in?
Regardless of my fears and insecurities, I bid you farewell Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and followers. I am going on a 40-day vacation to my real life without sharing what I am doing with my cyber friends and without interruption from cyber friends status’, updates. My brain will only have to process what I am actually doing each day- and that is all…..
I will share updates each week about “my vacation”
Until then – take care,