The world of social media can be great. You can connect with people you never get to see, learn about new things, get the latest news on trending topics, market something you're selling....the possibilities are endless. However, social media can be a huge time waster, disconnect you from the people physically around you, make you lose respect for people you thought you liked, make you envy the "perfect" life your friends seem to live, depress you, make you mad....I could go on.
It's the latter list that social media has become to me. I tend to use social media as a means to distract myself from being bored. And I find myself being sucked into the drama that breeds within the comments on threads of topics I feel strongly about. When I read all the ugliness, it leads me down a path of feeling angry at people I don't know, and depressed about a world I can't change. Even sharing my own opinions about hot button issues on my Facebook page can cause people who I thought were my "friends" to belittle and chastise me.
If I didn't need social media to help promote my novels, then I would disappear from the Internet altogether. Since I can't do that, the last couple days I've tried to limit my time on social media. The easiest way to do that is to delete my apps. If I really want to get on, I have to re-download the app and sign in. This may not take long, but it's more of a hassle than having it readily available as soon as I unlock my phone.
The first day I tried this, I only got on to check if I had any notifications, did not scroll through any news feeds, and then deleted the app. I felt so much better all day. I didn't feel as down as I usually do, and I was more present. The second day, I re-downloaded a couple times and limited my scroll time to ten minutes. But then today, I found myself missing it. Why? I have no idea. I scrolled longer than necessary, and read comments about things that I knew would only piss me off. I started to fall back into old patterns and I didn't like it.
Social media is a double-edged sword. If not used responsibly, it can become an addiction. Therefore, I am going to try to continue what I'm doing.