Social Media: The Good, The Bad and The Real

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If we had a quarter every time we picked up our phones to use social media, we’d be billionaires.

That’s what I think at least. According to an infographic by Social Media Today, over the course of 5 years, we’ll spend more time on social media than we do eating or drinking. Yup, let that sink in.

Social Media: The Good, The Bad and The Real

A virtual reality has become more a part of our daily routines than our carnal nourishment. And let’s face it, the things we’re consuming on these platforms isn’t always positive for our minds or states of being.

Social media is the first thing many of us do when we wake up, right before bed, while we’re eating, exercising, walking to the train, waiting for the train, sitting on the train, sneaking it at work, using it when we’re out with friends, in the bathroom (you know you do, don’t front), just to name a few.

If we did that with anything else, say drinking, we’d have absolutely no control over ourselves at that point. With social media, we see no harm no foul since the effects are mental, relational and time consuming.

Yet these are the most important areas of our lives that need focus. 

Mental

What we think about ourselves, others and the thoughts that we put out into the world creates the world that we live in. Manifestation is real, and if we’re constantly consuming what other people think, say or do, we’re giving away the control of our thoughts on social media’s silver platter.

Relational

The way we relate to others is through eye contact, verbal communication, and certain gestures that can only be picked up if we’re paying attention.

Social media puts us in a minimal-contact zone, where we walk with our heads down and eyes on screen plugged into an unreal world. Creating little to no contact with an actual person right in front of us in the real world.

Time 

Time is our most valuable asset. The impression is that social media is free, but is it really if it takes up so much of our time and time is something we can never get back? 

We’re all in this matrix, myself included. Which is why over the weekend, I decided to not use social media. I stepped away from it.

I didn’t want to know what people were doing, thinking, or saying about the newest trending topic. I didn’t want people to know what I was doing or what as on my mind. I wanted to know my own thoughts, be present with myself without documenting it, and basically, get back to me.

Social media can be our source of positivity, uplifting, cool blog posts, inspirational quotes, all that good stuff. It can also be a place of comparison, complaining, mindless overconsumption and look-at-me-and-what I’m-doing-ville. 

Self-Check

You ever find yourself in a good mood one minute, then you go on Twitter or Instagram and all of a sudden you feel deflated?

Sometimes after seeing certain posts I feel underwhelmed. The thing is, we have control over who we follow, but we don’t have control over who they follow, who they retweet, repost, like, etc.

So really, our eyes and minds are at the discretion of people we don’t know. And that within itself can have its effects on our emotional, mental and spiritual wellbeing.

At a certain point I started to wonder, who’s thoughts are these in my mind? Are they mine? Is it something I read on Twitter? Instagram? Facebook? Is it from an ad I saw on the train? A song I was just listening to? Or maybe it’s the Netflix series I binged? 

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Whichever the source, they all lead to one thing: they’re not my thoughts. They’re someone else’s preconceived notions and opinions I was not only consuming, but took on as my own.

3 Keys to Help Limit Social Consumption

Too much consumption of anything isn’t healthy. I’m not saying let’s ditch social media altogether. What I am saying is to be more aware of the time we spend on it, what we’re consuming while we’re there and also what we’re giving away.

If there’s three things I’d want you to take away from this social media rant, it’s:

Balance

Setting times when to use social media or setting a duration while you’re on there is a small way to give your mind and spirit a break from everyone else, and get back to you.

Take note of how you feel after reading certain posts, and whether or not you want that energy to continue every time you go onto that platform.

I’ll even challenge you to pick a day where you don’t use social media at all just to see how at peace you feel.

Clarity

Constantly reading other people’s tweets, posts or captions, and consuming people’s every move on their stories is only taking up more space in your own mind. Make sure to leave some space for you up there, it’s sacred.

Your thoughts create your reality. Be aware of what you let roam or stick.

Presence

Being in the moment is what life is all about, social media takes us out of that.

Make it a point to allot time for yourself to just be with yourself. No tweets, stories, or distractions. The world doesn’t need to know your every move or thought.

Spending time with you doesn’t always need to be documented or validated, just experienced.

Do you have social media detox practices that work for you? If so, let a sista know in the comments below! I could use some more solutions.💆🏾

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