Disconnecting

In the spirit of this week’s Digital Literacy lesson about Mindfulness and disconnecting and simplifying the use of internet in our day-to-day lives I did just that. I realized that I, like many of the students from Convent and Stuart Hall in San Francisco, am addicted to my devices.

15901983042_cf465f5636_oThese students were challenged to disconnect from tech for three days. Some students succeeded and some students did not make it the full three days. One student that “failed” said he felt “naked”  without his phone and that his fear of “missing out” on social media was too great. I don’t feel that I’m on my phone all that much, but I feel more comfortable if it is with me at all times. If I forget my phone when I leave the house, I go back to get it. Even if I’m only gone for fifteen minutes… A lot could happen in that fifteen minutes! Right?

I use the excuse that because I am so far away from home and my family I have to have my phone at all times because that is my lifeline to them. Well, my siblings are all at school from 7:30 to 4:00 and my parents are working from 8:00-6:00 so I can’t really keep in contact with them during the majority of the day, so that excuse is just an excuse.

Well it’s time to quit. Now, I’ve never been addicted to anything before (coffee doesn’t count) but I hear that quitting cold turkey isn’t the best strategy so I’m starting off small and building my way up to Leo Babauta’s zen habits.

I QUIT FACEBOOK! I deleted it and I feel great. Like Babauta, every time I got on Facebook I felt 4461019149_448d2df8ee_ooverwhelmed by ads, birthdays, game invitations, and a lot of notifications. And don’t get me started on status updates. Frankly, anything I saw on there was not important and if it was, I probably already heard of it through direct contact with that person.

I DELETED PEOPLE I FOLLOW! Obviously I didn’t delete everyone, I just refined who I am following. I don’t need to follow 50 cat related accounts on Instagram and Twitter. I just don’t. I have two perfectly adorable cats under my own roof. I also deleted accounts that are nothing but noise. If an individual is posting 15 selfies a week and it annoys me, what am I missing out on if I delete that person? Well, 15 selfies, but nothing critical.

IMG_4663I GOT RID OF MY OWN NOISE! Do I need to post selfies or 100 pictures of my cats on Instagram? Well, if that is what I want my identifier to be, then yes. But if I don’t want to be a vain, crazy cat lady then probably not. So I deleted a ton of posts and pictures from my Twitter and my Instagram accounts.

I still need to figure out how to filter out my email accounts and unsubscribe to a few other things, but so far I feel great about the changes I have made to simplify the internet and disconnect that much more.

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7 thoughts on “Disconnecting

  1. I give you kudos for quitting facebook. There is no way I could ever do it since that is one way that I stay in touch with my friends and family. I guess you could say I’m nosey because I like seeing what my friends post and keeping up with what is new in their lives. However I do want to clean out my friends list because there are too many people that I don’t know or have no reason to be friends with any more because we don’t even talk any more. I love deleting my emails because I feel like I’m getting rid of useless clutter in my life and I always feel so much better afterwards.

    1. I do too Kayla! I am actually really good about keeping up with friends and family via emails or texts and phone calls so deleting Facebook isn’t going to affect that area of my life. But wanting to keep up with your friends lives on Facebook doesn’t make you nosy! It just makes you a really attentive friend 🙂

  2. It is great that you were able to quit Facebook. I couldn’t do it, for a couple of reasons. I have family that live in other places that we keep in touch and I also have friends from afar that we use it for that reason too! But I have made it easier to stop letting the internet distract me so much!

  3. Good on you for the steps you’ve taken! The only social media I really manage is Facebook. My excuse for remaining is that I’m in a band, and a lot of our publicity / word-spreading for shows is done there. It’s a piss-poor excuse, I know. Every few months or so I go through and purge my friends list to have only what I deem “necessary,” but I’m sure that’s a crutch. Still, I feel like I can pretty confidently forget my phone at home and not have a panic attack. I live with most of the people I ever really need to get a hold of.

    1. Facebook has its benefits for sure, just none of them are geared towards me. I have been getting along just fine these past two weeks without it. I forget that it even exists now that my iPhone isn’t sending me notifications 24/7.

  4. It is so easy to get sucked into the internet and social media…. I just hate it. However, I have found social media to be a very helpful way to stay in touch with my niece who is college in Kansas and with my other nieces and nephews that live in Iowa. I cherish it for those kind of of opportunities.

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