o really, what was being anti-social in regards to social media (as a Lent objective) like?
Freeing in some ways. Restrictive in others.
First off – I’m a writer. Technically I create my own social media. I maintain a set of blogs and create content for them. I post broadly about the craft of writing and specifically about the craft of reading (i.e. book reviews). So I do have my creative outlet there.
Without Facebook and an incessant need to click into it to see who liked me and who I needed to defend my views against (you trolls, you), my life certainly became more tranquil. Yes, I know that we only expect tranquility if you book a dream Caribbean vacation that involves a shared hammock, a tall drink, a wide sun hat (and presumably a staff of waiters/slaves to meet every need). But this freed up a lot of the noise one gets in Facebook. I didn’t have to judge people’s opinions or be outraged by crazy stunts. I didn’t need to reflect on wise sayings (usually with pictures of teepees or wolves silhouetted against the moon accompanying them). My life is my life again. My opinions are mine. And I could enjoy them without having to put them out on a stage most public for comment or rebuttal.
However, there were noteworthy things that I did wish to take for Facebook but couldn’t, not until Easter anyway. There was the fifty mile bike ride I did (a fun effort, my first effort at long-distance cycling). And then the Orlando-Daytona trip my brother and I rode. There was my friend’s birthday party, the bike I rented while there, and the wonderful trip along the D&L canal I took. And the pizza I spilled while enjoying my own tranquil moment. There was the completion of Timeless, and the season opener of Better Call Saul. There was even that wonderfully complex new episode of Rick and Morty. There is just a lot of stuff that happened and, frankly, my blog site is not popular enough to stand on its own – I need the link to Facebook to bring the traffic in. Recognizing this, it’s why I put the caveat in place that I could update on Facebook with direct links to my site, but not click around and not read postings. And it worked. But it’s easier to go into Facebook and post a quick account of something than it is to come up with a blog posting about it.
So there you have it. I learned both the power of Facebook and the danger. Now I’m checking only once a day (if that). I’m avoiding danger of juicing on it, of that Pavlovian response of click-click-click to take in every reposting and every share request. Overall, my life is much better now that I’ve got this limit in place (just as not drinking sodas (a goal of past Lent) has helped). I can’t recommend it enough.
So share this. You won’t believe what happened next.