7 Lessons Deleting Snapchat Has Taught Me

7 Lessons Deleting Snapchat Has Taught Me

No more streaks, selfies, or stories… for an entire month.
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Yep, that’s right — at the beginning of last month, I took the liberty to delete Snapchat entirely, along with a few other social media apps, including Twitter, Facebook and YouTube, off my phone and computer. Rather inspired by one of my favorite singers, Ed Sheeran, and his recent detachment period from social media, I decided to also quit using some of the most popular apps in the world. Though the beginning of the process was completely heartbreaking and seemed almost impossible to overcome, I slowly but surely discovered the infinite benefits of removing myself from the hectic online world that is taken over by today’s technology-driven addiction.

1. No more stress; no more validation

The second I deleted Snapchat, I immediately came to the realization that there was no longer the need to update the public with what I was up to. This took away the feeling of constantly having to validate myself — whether that was through putting on a show by posting new videos and pictures. There was no more stress with focusing on the game of statistics or the numbers of likes, comments or retweets I got.

2. Alternatives are superior

One of the main reasons deleting Snapchat tore my heart apart, was because I used the app to keep in touch with a few good friends and people who went to other schools, lived in different countries or who I only saw once a year, if lucky. But after removing these apps, I was quickly introduced to other, better ways to still talk with these friends and family members, such as texting or calling, which I found more personal and exciting.

3. Lose the 24/7 pressure

When I used Snapchat in the past, there was always a huge unspoken pressure to be doing something adventurous, eating somewhere interesting or looking cute and presentable at all times. But in reality, that’s not always the case! A lot of the time, I’m not doing something super interesting, and even if I am, I don’t always have to share it publicly. Sometimes I’m just in my room editing photographs, doing homework at my neighborhood pond or even just sleeping — and there’s no need to feel any pressure of having to document every second of my life on social media.

4. Live NOW

As a person who loves photography and videography and always has a camera on them, I found that removing my Snapchat account was beneficial for me to learn to live in the moment, rather than documenting it all for the internet. When I had Snapchat, the app acted as another load of stress and another requirement of visual media, on top of my DSLR camera and phone camera that I already, and would much rather, use to capture moments. Since I’ve deleted the app, it’s allowed me to put away my phone when I’m out with friends and rely less on its unnecessary documentation of living through a lens, rather than through my own eyes.

5. Use phone storage for the better

I’ve always had an issue with storage space on my phone, especially because I’m limited to only eight gigabytes and half of it is used for downloading giant raw photograph files from my computer. Another two gig are used for actual normal phone things, like settings, data and applications. Snapchat took up one entire gigabyte, which left me with only one gig left over for other apps, videos and games — barely any space. By deleting Snapchat, I was able to store more information and a larger variety of apps on my phone.

6. Grades improve

Snapchat, along with the other apps and games I chose to delete during this one month trial run of social media detachment, I found was notably intrusive to my academic work environment and study habits. When I decided to delete the app, I found that I was able to focus for longer periods of time and no longer had to multitask trying to learn with worrying about responding to streaks at the same time.

7. Do more

“Do more” is actually one of my biggest New Year’s resolutions. Intending this lifestyle phrase to contribute to my life in all aspects — through academics, friends and family, community, health, activities, personal characteristic development and more — I have learned more about myself by getting off my phone and doing things I would have never done otherwise. I no longer worry so much about the miscellaneous information catered through social media — and instead, I can focus on living genuinely and doing more.

Cover Image Credit: Huffington Post

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

SEE ALSO: They're Not Junkies, You're Just Uneducated

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

Cover Image Credit: http://crashingintolove.tumblr.com/post/62246881826/pieffysessanta-tumblr-com

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What You'd Miss Out On If Video Games Went 100% Digital

Going 100% digital is not without its disadvantages.

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It's 2019, and we are full on in the digital age.

It is no surprise that shopping is being done online a lot more now than 5-10 years ago. Online shopping does have its perks. However, some consumers still have appreciation and preference for going to an actual store to make some of their purchases. Video games, consoles, and accessories are no exception. Sure when you buy digital games, you limit the number of times you have to get up to change the game you are playing, but that is not a good enough reason to go 100% digital.

So, what would consumers miss out on if video games become 100% digital?

There are several things one would miss out on should the video game industry became 100% digital.

I still see a considerable share of video game collectors for both retro and current generation gaming consoles. They enjoy purchasing special editions of specific titles that comes with extra goodies such as steelbook cases.

The majority of gamers, such as myself, do not have a video game library that is 100% digital or 100% physical. I tend to prefer purchasing physical games, but if a specific title is either digital only or if it is significantly less expensive online, then I will make the digital purchase.

If you were to purchase a game physically and it ends up not meeting your expectations, you will have options as to what to do with the game. You can return it for partial or full value back depending on where you bought it. You can sell it online on websites like eBay or LetGo. You can even regift it to someone if you are feeling generous.

When you purchase a digital game, you are stuck with it. You can delete it from your system's hard drive, but you cannot get your money back for it or give it away to someone else.

Most current generation games have things you can purchase separately such as season passes, costumes, and weapons.

You could link a credit card to your console's account and possibly have another user make a lot of purchases of “just this one thing," resulting in a hefty credit card bill.

If you would rather avoid that happening, you can buy prepaid cards and codes at various retailers so you can either buy that one item you want or buy digital currency to add to your account so your credit card will not get charged until your account has no money or not enough money in it when you try to purchase something.

Some consumers also still enjoy conversing with a real live human being, which you do not get when you do everything online.

So while online game purchases can be more convenient, it is not necessarily always better.

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