Lets face it, social media is a part of our everyday lives. Whether you're on FaceBook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, LinkIn or SnapChat, it's all around us. Social media gives us a chance to rekindle old relationships with people we've lost contact with, it gives us the opportunity to meet up with old high school buddies, and it keeps a diary of our memories via pictures and posts. Social media has changed the world in ways that we couldn't even imagine just a decade ago. Most of the changes are amazing and beneficial, but there are definitely a few flaws in there if it's not used properly.
Recently, I was talking to a person who told me that after scrolling their FaceBook feed they got themselves so upset that they started to cry and it ruined their day; this isn't what social media is supposed to do to you. We all catch ourselves mindlessly scrolling (and stalking for some) through others peoples lives. I guess it's a way for people to "keep up with the Jones'," and it can have a mind numbing effect just like when you use alcohol or drugs. We're all curious creatures by nature, and social media gives us that opportunity to go seek out whatever it is we're looking for. Social media may not be the way to fill whatever void people are looking to fill, there may be something deeper going on...
If you have your head buried in your phone between each set of lifting at the gym, maybe you need a social media break.
If your blood pressure is sky rocketing after scrolling through others people lives, maybe its time for a social media break.
If you catch your kid pulling at your leg and begging you to go outside and play with him or her, but you're too busy scrolling for the next cheapest Groupon, maybe its time to take a social media break.
If you miss vital hours of sleep because you're too busy arguing your political views with strangers, maybe its time to take a social media break.
If you have a stack of books you're not reading because you're too busy YouTubing hours of "Gym Fail" videos (which are hilarious), maybe its time to take a social media break.
If you're spending all night editing your selfies for Instagram instead of paying attention to your significant other, maybe its time to take a social media break.
If your head is buried in your phone so much that you actually stop smiling or you don't even greet people you pass by when you're out, maybe its time to take a social media break.
My week long hiatus away from social media was incredible, weird at first, but incredible. I instantly was more relaxed and I got A LOT more done with all that extra time. I was guilty of all the above mentioned issues at some point I'm sure. So I made a conscious decision to delete all of my social media apps off of my phone, I only used my computer for business emails, and I didn't cheat one time. I finished half read books that were starting to collect dust, I worked on my wood carving skills, I spent more time playing with my kiddies, I perfected my Chess game (I was the White Team...on level Easy), and I was in the moment more. My mind was more clear and I could focus on specific tasks and actually get them done with no interruptions.
Being a Gym owner and being on social media is a must if you want to keep in contact with your team outside of the gym. It's a great way to spread your message and motivation to them for more than just the two or three hours a week that you see them. As long as you keep it business related and use it for the benefit of the client and your business, it will work wonders for you.
The nasty side of social media is missing your life that's right in front of you. At the local playground when the kids are running around like crazy, you see (almost) ALL the parents with their heads buried in their phones and missing everything that's going on around them. After twenty minutes of time wasting, they might make their way up to take forty-seven selfies of their kid to later hashtag something clever after editing the pic to shit. Even the vainness of asking your kid to pose until you think the lighting is just right is an issue in and of itself, image what our kids think if a single pic of them just isn't good enough.
The lines are blurred between reality and fantasy when on social media. As far as I know via social media, every single human I know has flawless skin (filters), they are all rich (#Grinding), they are all head over heals in love with their significant others at all times (He's my soulmate), and they all only go out to eat to the finest restaurants on planet earth. Social media allows you to filter anything and everything, and if you don't (or cant) see through the bullshit, it can drive you crazy...Unless, you use it properly! Social media isn't a competition to see who's superior, its entertainment. Don't use it for anything other than that and it can be a great place to kill some time once in a while, stay in touch with family and friends, or to improve your business.
Going forward with the use of social media since my week hiatus has been great. I've decided to limit my time on it and to avoid mindlessly wasting time doing anything unproductive when using it. Using it to capture and keep memories with my friends and family and to help my clients be the best they can be is where it will stop. I will live in the moment more no matter where I am.
I enjoyed the hiatus so much for its physical and mental challenge that I challenged a few of my friends to attempt to do the same...They all FAILED! Lasting only a day or two...I hope they see that by them failing there may be a bigger issue going on there. So now I challenge all of you to try a week free of social media. Think you could do it? Try it and let us know...And obviously be 100% honest.