Social Media Detox

On Monday September 22, 2019, I decided to take a detox from social media. Today is day 3 of my detox.

Brooklyn Botanical Gardens
Brooklyn, New York

Why did I decide to detox? Well, nowadays, social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and many others all require too much dedication for a few likes and shares. I’ve been planning this for awhile especially after receiving DMs from people with false accusations about who I am and why I didn’t answer a “Facebook” call. Facebook calls don’t even ring to your phone! SMH. Some people will place the entire basis of your relationship on one call you never saw. They will unfriend you and treat you like a stranger, all on one app, from one missed call. This actually happened to me. Clearly, social media relationships have gone too far; they have gotten out of hand. In response, I decided to take back control and freedom of my time. Hello DETOX!!!!!

No longer am I constantly refreshing a dead news feed, waiting on the next hot post, with reminders from Facebook that I “missed a popular post.” Or reminders from Facebook that my audience needs more attention or “What’s on your mind?” Being overexposed on the internet makes other people develop false sense of who you are as a person and individual. They no longer see the person but the XXX number of followers. Very often, family members will know what my every move is or say, “I got on Facebook to keep up with you,” yet they never see the need to build genuine relationships. Is this all for show? I found myself pouring more and more of myself into these social media apps, in the name of inspiration but who inspires the inspirer. I was also losing more control of who I am. And I don’t want that life.

Clifton Park, New York

Self-respect and self worth are imperative to maintaining positive internal feelings. How we view ourselves has a major effect on our quality of life. With so much toxicity and negativity in the world (i.e. social media) it is pretty easy to absorb negative feelings towards yourself if you are not strong enough. It is about no longer requiring the approval of others to feel validated, this is disrespecting yourself. Never place the wants, needs, and desires of others before your own. You come before other people in your life. Make sure you meet your own emotional needs, this is not other people’s job. They have their own life. With God in the driver seat, you can navigate anywhere life takes you. But make sure self respect is the safety belt. Acknowledge to yourself that you deserve to be treated respectfully, set boundaries. When others disrespect these boundaries have a zero tolerance policy. Be more assertive and confident to others and make sure they are not overstepping your respect line. When you allow others to disrespect you, this helps nobody. This is a sign that you’re slacking on your self-care and perspective of self worth; also allows the other person to act on negative interpersonal traits. Before creating an external world, i.e. on Social Media, we must be safe, productive, fruitful internal world. We must have a clear purpose for life outside of the social media box.

This detox will help me get back self worth and self care. I want to fully enjoy normal daily activities other than selfies, strolling, posting, liking, and commenting. It seemed like it was becoming a second job only to make the people who know you, hate you. Why am I giving myself away to be judged and ridiculed? I do it because I want to inspire but I must first be inspired. I don’t want to inspire a lie. This detox is therapeutic in many ways. Its forcing me to use a different part of my brain, one that doesn’t require likes for validation. It’s forcing me to work on other areas of myself and my life. Facebook post do not define a person or all that they are made of. Nor does it measure your self worth. That’s an inside job.

This is What I learned so far during my first phase of this detox:

  • Life is too short to base relationships off social media interactions
  • My mind is much more valuable without the need to share my every positive thought. I feel clear and free.
  • There are other areas of my life that need a lot of work. The first, self-care. So far, I have added aromatherapy to my daily regimen. This is helping me detox the stress of everyday life.
  • People don’t miss you when you’re off social media. In these three days I haven’t received any calls or text except from people who genuinely care. This is my village, small, but it’s a village, one that I am thankful for.
  • The feeling of not being glued to my phone screen every 10 minutes, jumping from one app to another, cross-linking this app to the next: Priceless. I feel free. I said that already but it’s true.
  • I do miss communicating with those who keep me encouraged thru social media but I must focus on a better me. I don’t need social media to do that.
  • I am capable of doing more constructive activities with my new abundance of free time. For one, I have been spending more time planning my walk ( The Doris Denise Jackson DReamergency Walk) and getting some details ironed out in my personal life.
  • Life goes on… Peacefully

Will I return to Social Media? Yes

Is this detox effective? Absolutely.

Adirondack Mountains, New York

My internal growth has increased drastically within the past three days. The lingering on and off feelings of doubt are slowly decreasing. Even with such a little time, I find myself searching for my more positive avenues to channel all of the free energy; I love not having the urge publish a post to social media every time I think of a new idea or inspirational words. Instead, I now prefer to write it down and deliver my talents at my own convenience. This is self control in my eyes. In control of every aspect of my social media life. I desire real relationships, not watered down “Hi and Bye,” social media love. Am I partly to blame for that? Yes but as a leader, it must stop this detrimental process, at least in my own world. I miss the short space in time being raised by my grandma Eartha when she was up and active, the 90’s. Back in those times, there was no social media, just family gatherings, lots of love, and no family members on social media chasing clout. We’d yell thru a large field of about 10 acres to catch the attention of neighboring family members. We used to pick up the phone and have meaningful arguments or celebrate good news. I mean you could just feel the genuine love. There were arguments but not arguments that last forever, there was no competition. Social media is part of the problem but I realize it really starts with the person. We are ultimately in control of the energy and waves we create in our life. If we never regain that control of ourselves, are doomed to being Facebook, IG zombies? I hope not.

I don’t know how long this detox will last but for now, I’m loving it!

– Dr. Shon

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