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February 2016

Blog life

Disconnecting

February 1, 2016

Social media and smart phones are great tools for keeping in touch with people. They can also be a huge time suck.

I’ve always been conscious of how much I use my phone or visit Facebook. Recently, I’ve found myself more and more reaching for my phone when I have down time. Every time I open a web browser, I immediately check Facebook. As much as I hate to admit it, these actions have become habits.

Quitting cold turkey is often an ineffective way to kick a habit, so instead of cutting everything out, I am going to work on lessening my dependence on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat and my smart phone. And thankfully, I have a PIC, partner in crime, in my husband.

One thing I do enjoy about Facebook is the connectivity it allows. I have family and friends that live far away, and Facebook allows me to keep up with their lives in an effective manner. But it would be just as effective for me to check my personal Facebook once a day instead of once an hour. SO. Keith and I have committed to checking our Facebook only once a day (I am connected to a few different accounts at work, however, and need to visit the pages once a day. I will try to refrain from spending time on my personal page when checking these other pages.).

I’ve already deleted Snapchat (if you can send it in a snap, you can send it in a text) and have unfollowed a number of accounts on Instagram that only serve as advertisements of some kind.

instagram

Keith and I have also committed to phone-free evenings. After 7pm, phones will go away. They’ll stay on in case of a phone call or text, but our goal is to cut out the mindless scrolling while sitting next to each other while not talking.

I am also going to get an alarm clock. Waking up and immediately seeing email, text and app notifications is not how I want to begin my day. I’ve started to turn off these notifications, but I’m really looking forward to moving my phone off my nightstand.

I am really interested to see if Keith or I experience any kind of withdrawal symptoms. Even though I feel I’ve been aware of my phone/social media usage and tried to keep it to a minimum, I know I’ve ramped up my connectedness lately, so am expecting to feel some kind of withdrawal.

My goal in all of this is to truly be present at every moment, to stop mindlessly flicking through social media, switching from app to app to find something to entertain my mind. I want to send more time doing what I loveโ€”reading, crafting, cooking, spending time with people I care about.