As an introvert, I have a love/hate relationship with social media. There are many days when my social media feeds can feel overwhelming. Too much information, too many articles to read, things to know, friends’ lives to catch up…it makes me want to delete them all and swear off social media forever. But here’s the thing. We will never keep up with it all…never. Let that soak in. Thinking you can keep up with all your social media is an exercise in futility, it’s impossible. The sheer volume of information that is being created on social media channels (i.e, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc.) is more than our brains can process or filter. And that’s just social media. Add in your favorite internet sites and the deluge grows. Some days I want to cry “surrender” and be done with it all.
But then I take a break, a much needed one, and breathe. Our brains need breaks from technology, from screens, from information overload. When I return, instead of worrying about what I missed, I make a more conscious choice. Instead of seeing social media as something I have to do to keep up, or not miss out, I shift my perspective and see it from a new vantage point. My social media feed completely changes when I see it as a place of connection. When I view it as a way to connect with the people and things I care about the most. Instead of a chore, it becomes a choice, a choice for connection. From this place, it’s easier to scroll past things and not worry I am missing something. Choosing connection over keeping up, competing, comparing or distraction, narrows my focus and weeds out the excess. Filters my feeds more easily and without a sense of angst.
If I take this perspective further, I trust that my time away and my fresh perspective allows me to more easily hone in on what’s important to me. I return to my feeds with clarity and a fresh set of eyes. I never worry that I missed out on something.
I believe that social media at its core is about connection. Yes, people may have hijacked it for marketing, metrics, fame or a host of other purposes that serve their own personal or business agendas. But for me, I choose to see it through the eyes of connection. Of somehow making this world a little smaller, a little kinder and myself a little more connected to those I care most about.
How do you view social media? Do you love or hate it? A choice or a chore? What happens if you change your perspective?
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I’m Adrienne. I’m an observer. Meditation Teacher. Cognitive Scientist. Pause Button Pusher. Curator. Mindful Technologist. Conversation Starter. Digital Anthropologist. Awareness Guide. Explorer of the Soul. Mindfulness Coach.
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