What Happened When I Gave Up Social Media
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Health and Wellness

What Happened When I Gave Up Social Media

A lesson I learned: I used to post, stalk, lurk so that other's could see that I was doing great--even though I rarely was.

What Happened When I Gave Up Social Media
Photo by averie woodard on Unsplash

Friday, November 10th, 2017 was the last time I looked through my feeds. Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, Facebook haven't been touched with a scroll of a thumb or a click of a computer mouse. Now I know this may not seem like a long time, but trust me, it feels like it has been much longer than being just barely over two weeks since I last touched the accounts.

What once turned into a social experiment has slowly started to turn into a habit that I'm doing my best to continue. Here's what has happened within the short amount of time I have decided to stop scrolling.

***Disclaimer: I want to be honest. I have given up my social media accounts, however, I currently work for an online marketing agency where I still update our client's social media across various platforms during the workday. This means that I HAVE been on social media for clients as an employee. (Also, family events are always put on Facebook so I do ~very~ rarely look at those.)***

My confidence has grown

There have been numerous studies showing how harmful social media can be for teens and young adults, Instagram being the biggest culprit to stir up depression. Social media can cause comparisons between celebrities and even your bffs. While I was looking at the beauty that others held, I had lost the vision of my own. Now, I'm focusing on the things that I can do well and I'm reminding myself that looks aren't everything but love is.

My spare time increased

Now, to be honest, I didn't even realize this happened until I started to reflect back. But I have realized that I have started to write in my journal more, I'm keeping up with my favorite TV shows, getting plenty more sleep, and catching up with old and new friends all. the. time. and it's amazing. Remember: Humans weren't created to go, go, go 24/7, take a break every now and then.

I have become SO much closer to the people around me

Like I said before, I've been lucky to experience so much quality time with my best friends. Some I never thought I'd ever see again, others I would see nearly every day but our conversations were always distracted by tiny screens. Without that distraction, more fun times and deep conversations have taken place. Your genuine relationships with those around you are a big determinant of how happy you are. So put the phone down and give a REAL compliment to someone (or hugs, hugs are good too).

My jealous tendencies, anxiety, and depression have decreased

As confidence, friendships, and other relationships have increased, the negative thoughts and feelings have decreased. I'm not saying that it's been smooth sailing (this semester has been hard for numerous reasons), but everything is getting better. And for the first time in a long time, I truly feel like it's going to be okay. (Hint for all of those struggling with similar issues, it WILL actually be okay. Even if it may not feel like it now.)


It wasn't easy giving up the constant scrolling. Even now, when I have spare time I feel like I should be doing something. We have become so used to filling our time with wasteful information. Not only that, I also learned that I had been providing useless information. Sometimes I still think about situations and think "I'm going to tweet that". Or when I take a picture, my immediate reaction was to put it on Instagram. I wanted instant gratification and affirmation that I was still relevant to my "friends." (Selfish, I know.)

Another lesson I learned about myself after I gave up my personal accounts is that I used to post, stalk, lurk so that other's could see that I was doing great--even though I rarely was. Growing away from this mentality was initially why I took on this small research project for my own interest. I needed to stop the comparisons, stop the constant negativity that plagued my thoughts, and I needed to stop trying to keep up with people who I didn't get along with.

I know I will get back on social media soon (I will need to post this little article) but I know that even the small time away has shifted my mindset and I hope this will help for the future. My advice to everyone: take a step back every now and then. Look at what you're using social media for and see if you're happy with your answer.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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