SOLSC23: Social media/phone addictions

In late 2020, when opening my phone led down a rabbit hole of death and doom, I decided I seriously needed a break. I specifically wanted to limit my social media consumption, so I turned off notifications as well as set up “Focus Mode.”

It worked for awhile. Then, I committed to no social media at all for the entire month of August in 2022. I’ll admit that the back to school frenzy and bone deep exhaustion contributed to me successfully completing that challenge, but I absolutely loved how liberated I felt. So when September 1st rolled in, I decided to keep it going. I didn’t open any social media until mid October (our district’s fall break).

I dabbled again in November – during Thanksgiving break. In December, it finally hit me. I was so proud of myself for not feeling addicted to posting or engaging on social media, but…. I was still addicted to my phone. Instead of mindlessly opening Instagram or Facebook, I must’ve opened my Gmail app 10,000 times a day as if I really wanted to erase yet another spam email. Admittedly, I noticed it when Elías was trying to show me something he could do: “Mami, mami! Mami? Look at me!” (I’m so embarrassed to confess that…. I’m not the only one, am I?)

In January, I completed the no social media challenge again. I’ve not figured out how to find the balance though. Yesterday, I opened Facebook after a long time of not opening the app and saw a college friend had gotten engaged; an old friend’s sister has been pregnant a few months now (!!); someone’s sibling passed away a few weeks ago… I’d missed these things the very day they’d been posted, but if I’m honest, does it matter? The three examples alone are each acquaintances now or relatives of acquaintances!

I recognize the good in being connected, I do. There’s something so tender about celebrating and mourning with others even when you’re miles and time zones apart…but at what expense?

8 thoughts on “SOLSC23: Social media/phone addictions

  1. mrssurridge says:

    I have left all social media. I’m old and still felt the disappointment of “not being invited”when things were happening. I’m sad when I look at Facebook six month after a friend has lost a loved one, but for those who are close, I Facetime or email. I’m sad for how our young people are so connected to social media and it seems to be effecting their mental health. How are they supposed to know? They’ve never experienced life without knowing what they have been left out of. In my opinion, it doesn’t matter. I hope you are more peaceful because of your choice.


  2. sallydonnelly11 says:

    Your honest slice shows an issue we all grabble with. Finding a balance or just eliminating it completely. This line seems to be what YOU want to attend to: “Mami, mami! Mami? Look at me!” I’d do ALL you can to be present with this voice in the moment. Because the moments go quickly (my “Elias” are 31 and 34 and live in a different timezone and on a different continent. I’d love to have more time to stand right next to them and look. For now, it is mostly only a text or a photo on my phone.)


  3. Lakshmi Bhat says:

    Facebook and WhatsApp help me to be in contact with relatives and friends. We cannot visit everyone these days. I limit myself and I do not see all the videos posted in WhatApp, I just delete them. My husband too uses both but within limit. He is some contact with hundreds of his students and they love it when he posts photos of this place where they had studied and lived for five years. I would not cut myself completely from social media. It is a nice part of our lives.


  4. Glenda Funk says:

    There’s a plethora of evidence showing we’re more connected w/out social media than with it. It causes anxiety, depression, and lots of other problems. I know I’m due for a detox. You’re setting such a good example for your child by not constantly scrolling, Keep doing what you’re doing. You’ve already answered that last question!


  5. kimhaynesjohnson says:

    Amen and amen! Yes! You are so right. I feel so much better when I put my phone down and live in the moments. I do use it a lot for the camera since I try to preserve my moments for blogging, but the intentional less-traveled path of no social media is like medicine for the soul of living. Preach on, sistah! I love this post today.


  6. arjeha says:

    We all seem to be so attached to our phones and social media these days. I applaud your fortitude in sticking with your decision to take a break from it. I feel like I need to follow your example.


  7. wordancerblog says:

    Great post. Important issue. I can never fully figure out social media – so I have only dabbled. I remain monk-like and I finding it calming. I’m so old that I call/text when I need to connect!


  8. mschiubookawrites says:

    I’m inspired by this post and your honesty. The line that Sally quoted stuck with me too because I have heard something similar, cueing me to leave my phone in another room or in my purse. Your last paragraph speaks volumes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s