This year during lent, a 40 day period, I gave up social media. Giving up a bad habit of constantly checking my phone wasn't as bad as I thought. The experience was eye-opening and I encourage people to ditch your life on your screen. I have learned more in these 40 days than I have ever before. This time away from my 'online cyber world' felt good and refreshing. The experience gave me a fresh perspective on life, and I will be forever grateful.
1. "Where ever you are, be all there." ( Jim Elliot)
I learned to soak up the moment with my mind and maybe snap one picture. However, with my pictures, I did not have to worry about a caption, amount of likes, or the post in general. The memories seemed bigger and more exciting because I captured them with my mind, not my phone. I engaged in conversations with people I never expected and learned so much. Life is better when you live it in the now.
2. The perfect picture.
Instead of worrying about a cute picture with friends, I captured the most candid moments. Actual candid's; pure laughs and smiles. I took out my actual camera and discovered nature and even myself.
3. Stop worrying about the likes.
I have learned that my self-worth does not come from likes and how others view myself, but rather how I view my self. I have discovered I like the person in the mirror and who she is within. I believe self-confidence issues have a root to social media. Stop looking for acceptance and love who you are. God does.
4. Who you are on social media isn't who you really are.
Some of the most unhappy people have the most likes on Instagram. They are the ones who go on the nicest vacations, with the nicest clothes, but they don't have it all. Deep down there is something missing. Life is not perfect. No one is perfect. So don't worry about tangible things, find the happiness in life and you'll forever be rich.
5. I learned so much from people by asking instead of Googling.
I learned to look up from my phone and ask questions because life's answers aren't found on Google, Facebook, Instagram, etc.
6. I have found a pure form of happiness.
I don't know how else to say it, but I found clean and pure happiness. The happiness was technology free. I found it while laughing till my side hurt's when playing a card game with my friends and mom. I found happiness on a farm with my best friend in the middle of nowhere. I was able to be creative and use my imagination.
7. I have grown closer to God.
I became more connected to my heavenly father and was reminded of all the blessings in my life. I changed perspectives and began to look at everything I have. I came back to scripture and listened to God's voice. It is amazing how much God can show you if you just unplug from social media for a while. This experience was for God because he gave up his one and only son for me. Therefore, I should give up something that I too love a lot. John 3:16
8. I had time for ME.
I took a bath and listened to music. I wrote in my journal more and enjoyed every moment while I did. I had time to do things for me and most things I used to never have time for.
9. I made use of my time.
I put first things first and got work done on time. All the things I wrote on my to-do-list I accomplished and more. I was productive and found myself having free time to talk and have deep conversations with my family.
I challenge everyone to do this! It was a relaxing, refreshing, and positive experience. I smiled more and grew more confident in myself. Life does not happen on a screen and for the first time since I was a kid I felt I lived and opened my eyes to all God's beauties.