If you’re anything like me, you’ve probably had an on-and-off love affair with Social Media. In some ways, I feel like I was one of the last holdouts to jump onto first Facebook, and then more recently, Instagram. My reasoning was that it would be “good visibility” for my illustration business. However, very quickly I started to feel…
Inundated by the noise…
And then, far more subtly, I realized that Instagram in particular was making me feel
- Like a slave to creating posts
- Alternately depressed about my lack of followers/anxious that I might offend someone with what I posted
- Guilty that I was mindless scrolling quickly and “liking” posts in part because I read that that’s how you get followers
After reading various articles (most people say you HAVE to have social media) and a few, like this one (which will make you scared about anything and everything you’ve ever posted online), I came across this very interesting and inspiring TED talk on Why You Should Quit Social Media by author of the books Digital Minimalism and Deep Work, Cal Newport.
Learning that my “addiction” isn’t necessarily a character failing (watch the talk and you will understand why and how social platforms are designed to hook us in) and that I’m not alone in feeling depressed or anxious after a session on Instagram is a relief. But I’m no longer happy with just knowing this information and being ok with it. In fact, I’ve decided that it’s time to put on my big girl pants and take action. Just as I committed a year ago to eating healthily, doing daily yoga, and mindfulness and gratitude meditation, I’m now eager to reclaim control of how I use my screen time. So, as of the end of this weekend I will be logging off (deleting) my Facebook and Instagram accounts for good.
What does that mean? I’m looking forward to focusing even more time creating my illustrations and cartoons, getting back outside with my camera and continuing to try to post interesting, entertaining and informative posts here on my own site.
Perhaps at the end of the day I will feel less like this…
And more like this!
NOTE: If you gloss over all the other links in this posts, I highly recommend that you don’t skip the TED talk. It’s short, it’s eye-opening and it’s inspiring, too.
(P.S. Interestingly, Cal Newport and his book Digital Minimalism came to my attention via a talented artist friend, Emma, who I “met” on Instagram. Both of them have blogs so you can subscribe to read them at your leisure.)