In the past weeks, I’ve been feeling a stone in my shoe; an uncomfortable feeling that comes from a huge part of my life and daily routine: Social Networks. I say “huge part”, because to be honest, me and you, and everybody, waste hours of our day scrolling down on Facebook, Instagram or other social network. And this started not only to bother me, but also bothering the ones who surround me. Sometimes, I lose track of a conversation because my mobile turns on the screen. Or just like last week, when I was almost run over by a car…
After these and many more episodes, this could not continue and I needed to unshoe and remove the stone. So, I decided to do a detox from social network, one month without login on different websites, including Facebook.
When I first had this idea, I googled if other people have had the same feeling before. I was surprised when I realised hundreds of young people from all around the world thought the same, in the past months. In fact, a University of Michigan study from 2013 showed that more Facebook use was correlated with a decline in life satisfaction levels.
Here’s what I feel and why I’m doing this:
1. On average, I spend 5 hours a day on my mobile. (you too!)
This is crazy! Every time I go on Facebook or Instagram just to check a quick thing, I end up scrolling down for hours and hours. And, sometimes, when I finally stop scrolling down, I forget what was the purpose of logging in… This happens because platforms like Facebook or Instagram (which are the some company) have one main goal: increase the time we spend on their website/ app.
“Time increases the supply of impressions that Facebook can sell, which brings in more revenue. And time enables Facebook to learn more about its users — their habits and interests — and thus better target its ads.” on The New York Times
2. Social media makes me feel anxious, depressed and like a failure.
On one hand, I don’t know about you, but I feel that everyone is the best at doing something; everyone is doing greater than me and going to awesome places; travelling to this and that country; go out for dinner in that fancy new restaurant; always smiling and having fun…
Nowadays it’s easy to compare ourselves with our peers: number of likes and comments on our posts, people who viewed our videos, number of followers on our accounts, etc. If my status didn’t get more than X likes, I’d delete it.
On the other hand, as some of you know, in the past months, I’ve been focusing my energy on managing our Airbnb apartments and, launching Breadfast — Home Delivery Breakfast. I don’t have a 9 to 5 job/ routine and I spend a lot of time working from home.
I’ll tell you something: working from home and alone is not a piece of cake. It crossed my mind several times to drop this idea and return to a “normal job routine”. And then, to make things worst, I log in on social media and see everyone doing great and being soooo happy… Or aren’t they?!
I’m not going to do this experience because I’m seeking likes. I’m doing this to 1) experience myself the consequences of being offline (positive ones, I hope) and 2) share my feelings with other people who are feeling alike, hoping that I might be able to inspire them.
This said, I’m going offline from Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram starting on the 11th of November until the 11th of December. I’m keeping Whatsapp and Messenger so I can communicate.
Ps: If you want to share your thoughts send me an email. #NoFacebookFor1Month