I decided to take a week off from social media. I, like so many others, get sucked into the trap of incessantly checking my phone to see who liked and commented on my latest pictures and posts. Then there is the energy of taking in what other people have posted. More often than not the posts that come up on my feeds are about upset over recent political events, complaints about life or current events in the world, and attention seeking posts about upsetting things that have happened. I do my best to gloss over the complainer and attention seeker people, as well as the articles on current events that I am not ready to take in just yet, but even if minimally, they are energy sucking and depressing. Of course, there are the good news posts and pictures, new babies, kids, and pets doing adorable or funny things, and the uplifting and inspiring pictures and words – they all offer a pleasant distraction from real life. Plus, social media, at least as a yoga instructor, sometimes feels like a contest for most popular, prettiest, fittest, coolest/hardest pose done in the most scenic or risky location. It gets exhausting, and more often than not, leads to me feeling not cool enough, pretty enough, in shape enough, or successful enough. I eek out a pretty decent living doing what I love, working with some amazing and inspiring people, and yet, all of that can suddenly feel inadequate after too much time on social media. At the end of the day, all social media, the positive, uplifting, smile inducing, to cringe worthy, unsettling, and upsetting is a distraction.
I’m away from my home in New York City and my usual teaching schedule this week so it feels like a good time to step away from it all. From a business perspective, social media has kept me connected to my students and introduced me to people and companies I might not have otherwise known about, it can be used as a positive networking tool. I do find motivation and inspiration from social media. However, I also find it constantly pulling me away from myself – it is a distraction. Sometimes I set my phone down feeling inspired and invigorated by what I see on social media. Sometimes I am left feeling overwhelmed, drained, and lacking. It is time for me to reconnect with myself a little more deeply while tuning out the excess. It’s time to put the phone down for a little while.