- Heather Hansen
Limiting Social Media
I’ve made a huge effort to stay off social media for the last few weeks. I’m convinced it’s not good for my mental and emotional health. There wasn’t particular incident that led me to this conclusion, it’s just been a lot for a while.
There’s constant noise. Mostly from people with no level of connection to me other than “found on the internet.”
Which is the point.
Social media creates a strange power dynamic where people who don’t matter in your life get a say in your emotional well being. That’s a whole lot of power to give random strangers.
I’m not the kind of person who follows a crowd. But even so, the wave of online emotions is a thing. Whatever the crowd feels, you end up feeling. It’s a lot to process for things that don’t matter.
I have no idea how young people deal with it. I remember being a teen without a cell phone or computers. The most information that I was presented with was the newest People magazine on the back of the toilet.
As a parent of two teens I find myself spending lots of time helping them manage the deluge information that comes from seemingly everywhere. Helping them figure out what they should care about and what they should ignore. And teaching them how to ignore it (which is the problem, isn’t it?).
I’ve now organized my consumption of social media into windows of time. I can’t be done with it forever, probably. It does make me feel connected (and I’m a little too addicted). But I can’t go on with the free flowing noise as it was.
The amount of work I’ve been able to accomplish is staggering. What have I been doing with my life? Obviously I’ve been distracted.