Nearly 8-weeks ago, I decided to take a "social media vacation" and from the time I did until now, I've felt great!
This has been an idea in my head for quite a long time leading into it. My main concern for not doing it for so long was my business page and my music page on Facebook. My presence won't be out there to the same extent. But when I continuously would catch myself, mindlessly scrolling through Facebook or Twitter, for no reason at all, and I would even feel stressed or moody for no reason when I did, I decided to finally TAKE A BREAK!
But what about my Facebook pages for business and music you ask??
Before I started my "vacation" I began really focusing on what my business page did for me. Does it get me new clients often? No. Do the majority of my clients follow the page? No (several aren't on Facebook at all). So why do I do it? I do have a good amount of followers and supporters and honestly it's often for brand recognition and to share stories and information. It's not a means of bringing in new clients, that's just a bonus if it does. So what's the big deal if I don't post as often? And my music page (which doesn't have nearly the amount of followers my business page has) is more to be a place my followers can go to see where my next gig is around the area. So again, what's the big deal if I don't post as often?
What were the "rules" of the social media vacation?
- Twitter and Facebook are off limits. Period. No need to check them. If something is important to me, someone will share it with me in person or via text, email or messenger.
- Facebook messenger is ok. It's personal. It's not needlessly sharing thoughts, stories or things with "the world", it's like a text message; private and directed to someone specifically so that's ok.
- Business services updates are allowed to be posted during my "social media vacation" (music gigs included). I decided that I would still post business updates regarding services to the Facebook business page but that is all. No random posts. No pictures, no stories etc... Just service update.
That's about it. Pretty straight forward. :)
How have the nearly 8-weeks made me feel?
Amazing. I've learned a lot about how social media impacts our mind (and body for that matter). It truly is an addiction, and yet I know for a fact I wasn't as bad as others. But there would be times I would come home from work, and the first thing I did was pop on Facebook to see "what's going on with everyone". Why!?!? Nothing is private anymore. Nothing is personal. I kept saying to myself;
Why do all my followers need to know I'm not happy or that I'm happy about the performance of my favourite soccer team?
Why do I feel the need to share a cool article I read on my Google News with all my Facebook friends? If it's that good of an article, I'll remember to talk about it those who might care later, right?
Why do I feel the need to mindlessly scroll through these social media sites instead of doing something I truly enjoy; play a game, be present with family/friends, read, draw etc...?
For whatever reason it clicked with me. The memory of life BEFORE we suddenly felt the need to share everything with.... well, everyone practically.
From the time I began my "social media vacation" I've truly felt life become simpler. Weird I know. But the world just got a whole lot smaller again, like it used to be before social media was a thing. I truly felt like a weight was off my shoulders. Only the things I care about are the things I'll read about, talk about or listen to. I don't get caught up in other people's battles (not that I would comment often, but you read them and feel anxious or stressed in doing so). Life got a little bit more simple again ..... and I love it!!!
Where to after the "vacation" is over?
When I announced the "vacation" on my Living Energy Facebook page video, I said I'd be doing this until September 2018 (which is a couple weeks away). However, my plan is to do the following before then or at that time....
- My personal Facebook page will be become a lot emptier. I plan to delete most pictures etc and make my account pretty basic. Minimalist if you will. I have all these pictures myself, so if I ever feel the need to share them with anyone, it'll be with people who are with me or who I message directly.
- My business page usage will change. I can see myself posting random tips, stories etc to my business page again, as I enjoy getting good information out there to share. However, I see myself utilizing the scheduling feature more often and more or less having a set day where I do all my posts for the week (be it 1 or a bunch) and after that, not worry about it until the following week.
- My Twitter account will change. My main love of Twitter is the connection with professionals I admire and look up to. There I can find research articles, blogs and information that other professionals share that I may not have found otherwise. But other than that, I see myself again, cleaning up my account (minimalist again) so that I am only following those accounts that benefit me in what I do.
**This "vacation" is like everything else in life; you get a "boiling point" where you're so fed up with certain habits, you finally just say "#@$% it!!!" and move on. Honestly it feels incredible. It goes along with one of my aspects of my Living Energy philosophy, "Live Now" and easily helps me do so. We've had trips and vacations as a family this summer (for once in our busy lives) and the need to share things with the world is non-existent. If I took any pictures, they were for us or to share with people I'm in contact with - but not social media.
I'd recommend this to ANYONE who has social media and who wants to simplify life more to the way it should be. Personal. Simple. Less (needless) stress. **