Several tech executives have recently spoken up over their concerns about social media and the effect it is having on our society.
Chamath Palihapitiya, a former Facebook executive, said in December 2017 that he has “tremendous guilt” about the company he helped make. “I think we have created tools that are ripping apart the social fabric of how society works,” according to an article in the Washington Post. I tend to agree.
The Center for Humane Technology says that social media has “trained us to replace our self-worth with likes, encourages comparison with others, and creates the constant illusion of missing out.”
As someone who has spent the last 15 years as a heavy technology user, sharing my expat life and travels with family to becoming a professional blogger, I’m no stranger to the positives of the World Wide Web. Despite this, I made a decision in 2016 to take a break from using my social media accounts to focus on my real life.
I deactivated my Facebook profile and only kept Messenger for keeping in touch with family and friends.
By doing this, I was able to read up to two to three books a week and kickstart my 20kg weight loss.
Did I return to social media?
Yes, I did, but I was able to look at it for the tool it is, with greater awareness, self-control and mindfulness.
In parting I’d leave you with this from blogger, Alexandra Franzen.
“At the end of my life, will I say to myself: ‘My God, I am so grateful that I tweeted 151,200 times (2,016 tweets per year times seventy-five years starting around age twenty-five) throughout my life? Time well spent! How wonderful! Alex, is this really how you want to be spending your life-minutes? Isn’t there something else that might be a more meaningful use of your time? Wouldn’t you rather be walking outside, talking to your mom, writing a novel, working out, mailing a letter, volunteering, you know, all of those things that you ‘never have enough time’ to do?”