Today is National Day of Unplugging. Today highlights the value of disconnecting from your devices. A great way to unplug is to read a book, meet up with friends or go for a walk or run.
As someone who is tied to their phone for more than half of their waking hours, it can be demoralizing and draining at times. There are days I feel like a train wreck because of it. I am too wrapped up in the social media world that I forget to pay attention to the real world. That is a bad place to be.
Between running a social media marketing company and my own personal blog to scratch my itch for writing, I am bogged down to social media to the core at times. Being able to unplug is not only a great way to recharge, it is great for my mental health.
While social media is a great tool for business and for personal networking, too much of it is detrimental, much like anything.
For starters, it can be addicting. Days where I am constantly looking at social media are the days it becomes harder for me to put my phone away even after work hours. That leads to getting fussed at by my wife. Not fun. All this despite the fact I likely won’t miss anything, part of it is the FOMO of social media.
When I do get those days where I get to go shoot and edit a video for a client, it helps me unplug for a little bit. Working from home and that work consisting of social media is a dangerous game to play mentally.
A couple of ways I unplug is grabbing lunch with friends or clients once or twice per week. My bank account hates me for it, but I will take the trade off. On the days when I do eat at home, I put my phone down and watch an episode or two of The Office while I eat.
Once you get sucked into the rabbit hole of social media, the addiction is only the beginning. Then you start feeling the self doubt because you don’t have as many likes as person A, B or C.
So we start comparing ourselves to other people. Not only are we comparing ourselves to them, we’re comparing everything in our own lives to the highlights of theirs. Most people don’t put their failures or struggles on social media. At least not the day to day struggles.
Take business owners for example. How many business owners do you know talk about the worry of closing their doors or upgrading they need to do for their business? If I had to guess, probably not many. You don’t hear those things too often because it is all sunshine and rainbows for the most part.
Now, not only are we comparing, we can become jealous of those people. Maybe those people are individuals we consider friends. We start doubting ourselves or maybe feel angry that we don’t have those same things they are highlighting.
We get wrapped up in the likes because those little reactions help our brains release endorphins whenever we see that notification. When you don’t get that fulfillment, it can go the other way.
For those people you may compare yourself to, how many of them have meaningful relationships with their followers or friends that are reacting to posts?
I saw someone share a story of something that happened to them recently. Within minutes, it had a bunch of likes and comments. Some of the comments were people expressing concern with questions only to be left in the dust by the person who posted? Empty relationships.
But for many people, they just see the reactions and comments and beat themselves up for not getting the same.
Now we get off social…only to get back on five minutes later because we are worrying so much about it. If this sounds like you, you’re not alone.
Running a digital marketing company and blog, I deal with it myself at times. I would say the good days far outweigh the bad. Those bad days still suck nonetheless.
All this being said, there are more things I love about social media than I hate. But sometimes we need that recharge and seeing that today is a day to celebrate unplugging, do yourself a favor and try it!