Sunday, April 30, 2017

"Yikes." Media Binge-Fast

What an eye-opening experience.

Starting off with the social media binge, I found myself doing what I usually do, which is getting on my phone when I wake up, whenever I am bored, or whenever an awkward situation arises. To justify my high amount consumption of social media for those few days, I was constantly checking everything I could, whether it be hopping on Twitter, checking my email, or going to that random News app on the iPhone to see what is happening around the globe, I was pursuing an amount of media I have never done before. Once I started on this road of constantly checking, browsing, and searching, I could not just stop and work on homework. The biggest problem for me was being able to just put my head down and work some homework, without having to take an sad excuse of a study break. Which would usually include the checking of every social media outlet I possibly could. In my head, I thought I was totally fine and I could balance the two. Needless to say, I thought for sure that the fast of media was going to be so easy. How hard could it be to step away from social media for a few days?

After taking the steps needed to get rid of any chance of social media on my phone and laptop, I was ready for this fast. Not but 3 hours into it, I found myself going on my phone and trying to click where the Twitter app would be, like it was second nature. Immediately, I felt a pit in my stomach. What was I missing out on? What if there was some big news that happened? Do you think my friends are wondering why I am not on Twitter right now? Thoughts raced through my head as I sat their in my living room, almost lost at what to do with my time. Do I.. like.. read? 

It wasn't until the second day where I was not trying to find social media on my phone. I was looking around me, and observing what people were doing. I felt more engaged when talking with people face-to-face. I did want to check the social media platforms, and I really wanted to just download the apps again. The desires to be on social media were still there, but the fact I was not checking it in unhealthy dosages, and I was able to stay on task was huge. When social media was available for me easily, it felt like there was an itch I needed to scratch. During the fast, that itch did not present itself as much and I was able to have a little more self-control than usual. That made all the difference, and is what made me step back and examine my life as it pertains to my reliance on social media.

I enjoyed the little things more, conversations with people seemed more real, and I felt a little more free from the feeling of checking social media. Overall, I loved doing the binge-fast, and it has caused me to keep in mind how much I actually look at my phone, and to stay engaged with the people around you in conversation. 

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