Saturday, January 27, 2018

The Media/Social Media Fast

If you are a news junkie or addicted to social media it might be a good idea to give it a rest.  Literally.  So much of the news is negative and then I came across this list and was pretty shocked that people would bother to keep a list of kids driven to suicide by social media bullying.  It is OK to just turn everything off--for a day, for a weekend, for a week, a month or longer.

I've personally cut back on Facebook (I no longer have it on my phone since the app likes to track you, target ads to you, and generally be too invasive), I've cut way back on reddit, and I will check the news a couple of times a day instead of every five minutes like I used to.  Maybe I am just getting old or maybe technology is to blame for people becoming all kinds of crazy these days but the idea that it is OK to just shut everything off seems to be a foreign concept to many people.  Go sit in the sun or walk through the park with zero input from anything but the weather--it's a very relaxing thing to do.

Since social media is so ubiquitous, parents don't realize the impact that 24/7 social connections can have on their kids.  It can be both good (it's nice to get positive feedback from your friends) and bad (years ago you would deal with a bully at school then go home and not have to deal with them until the next day, these days kids can be bullied 24/7 on social media which is more psychologically damaging than most anything else they deal with).

It would be wonderful if people (all people) had a limit of a few hours of social media/media consumption per day.  The other hours could be spent taking care of yourself--sleeping, doing hobbies, etc--and if you did have cause for additional social interaction it would be in person or on the phone, you know, real social interaction instead of moderating what you do online to increase "likes" or annoy people purposely.

So that is my rant for the day--stop letting social media rule your life.  Shut if off.  If regular media is your addiction of choice, shut that off as well.  Stop letting the craziness of other people stress you out and ratchet up your anxiety.  Plus all of that extra time can be spent on fun, useful activities like prepping, exercising, or learning new skills.

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