Google Maps – my permanent ally (unless the arrow decides to freeze and play guess where) used up my data allowance. Having been lost in Barcelona each day, I had no choice on my return home, to cut back social media and give up my mobile train time, making use of a good book. A book that changed my life’s perspective.
A new job – a decreasing blog
To anyone who enjoys reading The Style of Laura Jane, it’s no secret my posts have declined, my comments have vanished. Trying to find a balance is like trying to choose between a life with nothing but savoury or nothing but sweet. I’m attempting to throw energy at my relationship, my new work which often has me working after-hours, and my health – which if you must-know, my fitness is begging me to push harder.
And then there’s social-media. If you devote time to comments, interacting and growing your account, time is of the essence. For quite a few years now, the pressure of social-media has frozen what could have been precious. Instead of improving my writing – my beloved art, instead of nourishing my mind with new theories and thoughts, instead of teaching myself Spanish and experimenting in the kitchen as I love to do, I’ve frantically spent 1am in an Instagram daze, and 6pm on a Twitter craze.
Cut back social media – goodbye bedtime Insta
Is this how to gain new readers and reach my goals? Or is it a way to give myself instant gratification? What I really gained from hours devoted to complimenting people all over the world, I’m not so sure. But when I picked up Life Happens to Us, I found myself fulfilled in a way which made my sleep-deprived eyes feel okay. A shocking account of a woman who had to face deep racism, severe family drama – a mother who abandoned her kids – a father who couldn’t handle the stress and restored to violence, a sister who she slowly watched die and altogether a strong sense of loneliness.
Reading the harrowing pages of growing up feeling isolated and afraid, resorted me back to hidden-depths of my childhood. Pain I had covered in thick cloves of wool. I thought, after everything in life, the ups and downs and failures and successes, is my contentment actually going to continue to be up in air over how well I’m doing on Instagram? I’ve realised, I have some fantastic friendships, some inspiring people who root me, and a following I have worked hard to build. So, it’s not farewell, but I’m limiting my time spent to very short bursts. As I cut back social media, I will remove the emotional connection between me and my account.
My partner mentioned kids…
I’m not scared of the term or fearful of becoming a mother. But in my perfectionist mind, I thought about all the skills and traits I want before I raise another person. I started dreaming about the bigger picture and where my life leads. When we talk about self-love, or rather, when I wrote a post on its true definition, I spoke about the need to find time for ourselves. To not act as our own worse critics. But self-care is also about passion. Doing things, you’re passionate about, to inspire you to develop and love your life further. Here I am, passionate about museums and culture – not associating myself fully with either. My own book I take pleasure in writing, has somehow not produced a new chapter in months.
To say social-media has controlled or affected everything listed here, is a gross estimate and a naïve excuse. In my mind however, I know I’ve spent more time contemplating social accounts than I have done planning proportions of meaningful aspects. With that said, last weekend, me and my sister travelled to London and embarked on a two-hour walking tour, learning about spies – specifically, the Cambridge Five.
If you’re ever in London and wanting a fun activity – either alone or with friends, I couldn’t recommend London Walks enough. My guide was full of interesting information, he took us on a story and showed us round to areas which were once significant to World War II. Including how James Bond author Ian Fleming was a spy himself who created characters based on certain real-life people.
Life is too short for our souls to starve
Whether you believe in souls or not, is irrelevant to the grand scheme of this piece. Just like how our diets need to sometimes try new cuisine, and our eyes need to witness a new country far away, our brain’s need excitement, passion and education – creative or academical. If you cut back social media, you may find time for more of these great joys. Or at least, more time to think about them.
Have you ever cut back social media and have your views of social-media apps changed since when you first joined?