Socially Thinking: Breaking the hold of the media can be life-changing

I thought I should give an update on my No News May Challenge that I set for myself in the early days of May. I had decided I would only look at about an hour a week of any news sites and break that down into about five minutes or so a day. The quick update is that I stuck to my plan fairly well, with there being only a few days where I got caught up in the news-induced drama. On those days the anxiety was higher, I felt angry over the smallest inconveniences, and I felt as if the world was a hate-filled, dreary place that I didn’t want to be a part of.


When I didn’t look at any news sites, I was more engaged with the world around me and found more time for writing and reading.


What I have learned this past month of news consumption reduction is that once you start to cut back looking at the news, they start to lose their grip on you. By “they” I mean “the media” (social, news, etc.), news companies, and politicians. They control us through our fears and, man, have they succeeded this year.


I still look at news sites and get upset, but much, much less than I did. The number of days when something I read on the news or a social media site changes how I feel during the day is shrinking. My fear is shrinking. The thought that I have to be outraged and afraid all the time is shrinking. The idea that I have to be on alert at all times, wary of what politicians are doing to do next is shrinking.
I look at sites like The Daily Wire, NPR, The Atlantic, CNN, The Daily Beast, The New Yorker, and Fox News and I see people desperate for us to be in a constant state of panic or outrage. Without those two emotions, they don’t make money. The need to keep us angry and afraid because when we are in those mindsets, we will just keep scrolling and scrolling and sucking all those negative headlines up in a cycle of horror, as if we think that if we keep scrolling something positive will pop up and make all the horror worth it. Nothing positive is going to pop up and if it does, the writer of the article will find a way to make it negative.


Do we need to be informed? Yes, but right now I don’t see information, I see indoctrination from both “sides.” The fact I have to say that there are sides of media is weird for me. No longer is news objective. It’s either Republican or Democrat, Conservative or Liberal information being pushed at us. These days, whether or not we believe a story depends on what party we are a part of and what “news” source is giving us the information. If a particular news source usually supports and promotes the idea of the party or value system opposite of ours, we dismiss that information without checking to see if there could be some truth to it. It’s sad but true. We all know it. We all do it, some of us without even realizing we are.


While I didn’t succeed in breaking the hold the media had on me, I would say I put a significant, fatal dent in it. If the media wants to get me back under their control then they’ll have to bring in the aliens and the threat of nuclear war from China. Oh, look at that, “they” are already on top of those subjects. Unfortunately for them, I’ve already learned their tactics, that they aren’t to be trusted and I’ve also picked up a few good books I’d rather read instead.

My No News in May Challenge. Want to join me? Wait. Hear me out.

So I am sinking into a deep depression and have lost a lot of motivation off and on for the last year. You know why. Todays news is depressing, demoralizing, and creates insane amounts of division. Prop that on top of other life stressors and many of us have the making of a good ole’ fashioned mental breakdown.

Of course we are in control of how we allow the things we read and hear affect us but we are also responsible for what we allow in our ear and eye holes and I don’t know about you, but I’ve allowed too much in off and on (not consistently) for more than a year now.

I’m ready for a break during which I hope to accomplish some other goals in life including, reading my Bible more, praying more, finishing writing book two in my series, planting my garden, reading more, closing out my children’s school year, visiting some local parks, picking up drawing again, and searching for UFOs. The last one is a joke, but who knows. With all the free time I’ll have on my hands, I may just do that.

It isn’t that I like news sites or visit them because I’m really invested in what is happening in the world. It’s a way to distract myself, procrastinate, and, quite frankly, it is easy to become addicted to what I call panic or drama porn. Our thoughts are inexplicaply drawn to the negativity of life and where can we find the most negativity today but on a news site.

We can easily fall down rabbit holes, even without meaning to.

Anyhow, I digress. The point of this post is to try to hold myself accountable and to see if anyone else would like to join me in a news fast for the next month. This is not a total news fast. I am keeping myself at one hour a week which can be broken up however I like but for now I think I will allow about 8 minutes of news a day. This will include quick scans of one site and no more sinking into rabbit holes or checking Twitter (which I don’t even have an account on. What in the world am I doing? The place is a sink hole of depression and the worst society has to offer, in my opinion.) or any other social media accounts related to news.

You can keep yourself to more hours a week if you want, but I am curious to see if less news will make some of us who are susceptible to all the different messages overwhelming our brains feel less anxious. Join me if you like, cheer me on, or just ignore me. I’m okay either way but I hope by posting here I will feel guilty if I allow myself to be sucked into a media/news-induced hysteria. Let’s see how it goes. I’ll post some updates later in the month and in June. I’ll see if I utterly failed or at least had a little success.

Creatively Thinking: Too much social media kills creativity

I’ve decided the more I’m off social media, the more creative I can be, which is why it looks like another social media detox is coming up in the next week or so and it may last 30-days like I did earlier this year.

Actually, saving my creativity isn’t the only reason for dropping off social media – saving my sanity is more important at this point. In May I actually deleted my Facebook account, except for a ghost account to keep my blog page on there. Ignoring my better judgment, I went back on at the end of the summer and I can’t see that it has improved my life much at all.

When I slip into a depression slump I find myself scrolling through social media too much and when I scroll through social media too much I don’t do things I need to do or really want to do, like write my book or write a blog post or take photographs or – blah – clean the house. I just end up a depressed, moody slug sitting in front of my computer. I also end up angry, bitter and frightened for my childrens’ future.

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This past spring I did a social media detox and that’s when I started writing ‘A Story to Tell’ and decided to publish it as a weekly serial on here and then as a Kindle book. The success for me was simply how writing the story, and sharing it on my blog, was a distraction from social media, “news”, and from some challenging relationships in my life.

When I go on social media, I end up so wrapped up in the nonsense I read that I neglect the parts of my life that actually bring me joy — especially the more creative parts.

 

Social media is an addiction for many people. If you think it isn’t for you, do what I did last December and focus on how often you reach for your phone or computer to log into social media each day. Notice how many times you log into social media when you’re bored, lonely, procrastinating or avoiding real life (or certain people). I bet it’s more than you think because I know it was for me.

Another important aspect of learning how social media affects you is to notice how you feel after you sign off social media, or a news site.  Do you feel happier? I’m going to guess the majority of us can’t say that we feel anymore enlightened, elated, or hopeful about life after we’ve scrolled through a social media site. On the contrary, we probably feel like the world is on fire.

For creatives, it’s important to ask yourself if social media supports or hinders your creative flow. I’ve personally found that excessive social media use rarely supports creativity. In fact, for me, the constant digital noise I once engaged in silenced creativity altogether.

How can you think of new ideas, or use your imagination, when someone, or something, is constantly in your ear telling you what you think and who you are? More than once in the last two years, I have read about the need for all of us to seek more solitude and shut out the noise of the world around us.

Silence can facilitate daydreaming and daydreaming supports and strengthens our imagination. Imagination leads to creativity and then creativity leads to joy for even the most left-brained person out there. Creativity isn’t always about the arts . Creativity is also important for technical thinkers out there who need time create plans for projects or lists for completing whatever it is that helps them feel more organized. For many of us, organization helps us feel more grounded. Not having the time to create that organization because we are distracted by social media can leave us feeling discombobulated. 

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I have asked myself why there were so many great writers hundreds of years ago and less of them today? I have a feeling it is because hundreds of years ago the only thing people had time to do when the sun went down was think and daydream.

It’s not that social media is all evil. It connects us with new people, new ideas, and different worlds. It helps us reach people in a way we never could before. The evil part of social media is that we have allowed it, and what is shared on it, to distract us to the point that we have pushed aside activities that could actually further our society. Social media has no power over us that we don’t give it and many of us (me included) have given it awhole lot of power, let me tell you.

I don’t have any proof that inventions and innovations have decreased since the Internet and social media took over the world, and the exact opposite may be true in some fields, but I wonder if cures for cancer, or solutions to climate change, would have been found already if half of us weren’t scrolling social media; watching the circuses that are our congresses and parliaments; judging our neighbors; tsk-tsking the family member or acquaintance  in the middle of a divorce who has decided to write about it on social media; comparing ourselves to every other mother, writer, photographer, human being on the planet; and trying to change ourselves to fit some imaginary ‘normal’ in society.

Think about all the positive changes we could have made, not only in our own personal lives but in the world in general, if we weren’t staring at cat memes on our phones all day long. I have a feeling Satan knows that and has enjoyed dangling stupidity in front of us so we wander off the path we should have been taking all along.

All of this to say, I need another social media detox and you probably need it too. During my break last year and earlier this year, I offered some tips how to “survive” (or rather thrive) when you leave social media (even if only for 30-days); what I had time to do once I set social media aside; and how I felt when I logged back into Facebook after such a long break.

I know some of my blog readers aren’t even on social media (God bless you!) and some were on and promptly logged back off again. What’s your experience with social media? Do you find it stifles your creativity or productivity? How do you handle that? Are you better than me at balancing social media with your real life? If so, I’d love some pointers about how you do it. Let me know your thoughts in the comments. The last time I wrote about social media (Facebook for most of us), I had some really fun and insightful comments. 

 

 

Wasting too much time talking about Facebook and what’s on Facebook and what we saw on Facebook and oh my gosh blah, blah, blah Facebook

I can’t be the only one who is completely sick of talking about Facebook, thinking about what I read on Facebook, or wishing there was an IQ test before people are allowed to post on Facebook.

So yeah, here I am writing about Facebook again, but maybe that’s because I’m logging off Facebook for Lent. No, I don’t usually celebrate “Lent” in the strict sense of the word, but this year I am trying to focus more on relaxing, my relationship with God and simply detoxing my brain. And to do that I have deactivated my Facebook account for an entire – gulp – 40 days. (I do, however, have a business page that is being maintained by a “ghost account” simply for blog posts. I won’t really be checking it because not too many people see the page,  however, and I have no “friends” on the ghost account.)

Incidentally, the phrase “detoxing my brain” makes me think of sliding a toilet brush in and out of my ears and after reading the cesspool that is the current state of national news, I think that might be a good analogy. I’ve really been trying to avoid the news as I begin to detox, I really have, but almost every day I find myself peeking through my fingers, hoping something positive has happened, only to see it’s only gotten worse every, single day. It’s completely insane how crazy the national media is and I no longer know what is true or who to believe so I decided not to believe any of them. Part of my detox, therefore, will also be trying not to look at any news sites, which I have actually blocked on my phone.

Note I say “national media. My husband is a member of the small town news media, and I used to be, and that is a whole other “kettle of fish”, so to speak. Smalltown news is pretty tame and less prone to sensationalism, though some people are convinced that the behavior of the national media is trickling down to the local newspapers. They look for conspiracies even in the coverage of the school board meetings, as if any of the small town reporters have enough time or gumption to concoct stories slanted one way or another. Most small town reporters want to get in and get out of their meetings and go home on their meager salaries and eat some beans out of a can while binge-watching Netflix, since they can’t afford cable on their salary.

But I have digressed – as I so often do.

My brother and his wife have decided to completely delete their Facebook accounts after Lent, if not before. Adapting to a world without Facebook will be a challenge, but it’s needed, my brother, who will turn 50 in a few more months, says. Turning 50 has apparently caused him to reexamine his life and I’d rather he give up Facebook than dump his wife for a younger woman and buy a Harley during this phase. I’ll miss tagging him in all those memes about being the favorite child, but texting him to say so will do just as well.

I am torn between wanting to completely delete my account and keeping it to stay in contact with some friends and family, but honestly, most of those friends and family don’t actually speak to me, even on Facebook. Most likely I’ll decide to say good-bye to Facebook by the end of Lent. I highly doubt I will be missing much when I do and I might even have more time for other activities like I did when I took a break from the social media giant in December. The best thing about shutting my account down? Never writing another bloody blog post about Facebook and hopefully never talking about it again either.

Planning to take a Facebook break yourself? Here is a link to some tips I learned during my last Facebook break.

Logged back on Facebook. Experienced full body shudder. Logged back off.

After 30-days of Facebook detox I logged back on this past week and almost immediately regretted it.

From someone calling someone else they disagreed with a Nazi to fear-mongering posts about health issues my heart was pounding within a few minutes and I logged back off again and reached for my Teddy Bear.

Facebook has become a landmine of stress for this anxiety-ridden soul, which may be something I need to seek out a therapist for, or it may be simply a sign I need to stay off Facebook as much as possible.

The odd thing is that I don’t even follow any controversial people or news pages so the fact every day people are now flipping out on each other over the simplest of things seems to be a sign that we’ve lost respect and decorum. Obviously this has been happening for a long time but nowhere is it more evident than in social media where people forget there are real people behind the computer or smartphone.

This latest incident involved a thyroid expert I follow who had been featured on a show people didn’t appreciate. She wasn’t exactly called a Nazi but she was told the views of the people were Nazi views, which makes me realize that this far out from World War II some people need to read some history and remind themselves what a Nazi actually is.

Since I haven’t yet seen this particular organization call for the extermination of all Jews, but in fact supports them in many ways, I don’t see how they received the Nazi label, other than this is what certain groups seem to call people now when they don’t agree with them.

Well, anyhoo, based on of the idiocy that is modern discourse and the tendency for everyone to be offended by everything, I’ve decided Facebook may be a once a month thing where I check in on some friends and family but then log back off. My blog posts and photos on Instagram are automatically shared to the platform and luckily don’t require me to log into my timeline.

If you’re going to stay on Facebook and want to avoid stress, I highly recommend avoiding scrolling your timeline and instead visit the individual pages of friends or family members. That way you can avoid being slapped in the face by bizarre articles about girls who think they are boys because a therapist told them they were, people who think anyone who wears black shoes are racist, and politicians calling each other Nazis and immoral while they all conducting themselves in immoral ways.

You can also avoid headlines like “three foods to avoid in 2019” and “What you’re eating/wearing/drinking/thinking may give you cancer” and “New test will determine what day you’ll die” and the ever popular “The end of the world is near. Read here for the signs of the end times” (save yourself some trouble with that one and see the headlines and article topics above for those signs).

Bottom line? If you don’t have to use Facebook, avoid it. Go out and experience life. Take a walk, read a book, study God’s word, watch a comedy, write a silly blog post or two about Facebook or notice you have children and play a game or two with them.

You’ll be better off for it.

I know I have been.

What I have time to do now that I’m off Facebook

A couple of weeks ago I explained I’m in the midst of a 30-day Facebook detox or break, whichever you like to call it. I like the term detox because it does feel like I’m flushing some toxic thoughts and feelings out by restricting my Facebook access.

My ramblings about this break aren’t meant to convince anyone that Facebook or social media is evil, because while I feel it can be, I don’t feel it always is. Nor am I saying I’m better than someone who decides to be on Facebook on a regular basis.

People can connect with each other in many positive ways through Facebook, share images of grandchildren with grandparents, sometimes calmly share new ideas (emphasis on sometimes), and connect with people who have shared interests. These are all good things.

What isn’t good is how Facebook is set up to addict you to the constant need to never be left out and to feel you are loved simply because your notification bell made a little ringy-dingy (yes, I did just say that in Lily Tomlin’s voice. Yes, I am old enough to remember her doing those skits and if you’re not, do yourself a favor and look it up on YouTube, which can also be a time suck, so beware!)

I feel bad that last week I made my list of what I’ve learned so far with this break so negative, which is why I thought I’d share some of the positive aspects of signing off Facebook for 30 days. These are not listed in any particular order of importance.

1) I have had time to actually be bored and think. Yes, being bored, as I’ve mentioned before, is a good thing. When we give ourselves time to be bored we not only feel less rushed internally, but we open ourselves up to ideas – creative and otherwise.

2) I have more time to explore my passions and interests. I’m interested in photography, as you know, but I’m also interested in art and cooking. I’m finding more time for exploring cooking, but haven’t really sat down to get back into art like I want to, so that’s something I will be working on as this break continues (and hopefully beyond).

3) I have more time to gain knowledge or relaxation through books. I’ve been able to dive into books that make me think and books that don’t require me to think too much. I’ve been enjoying working my way through the latest Mitford books by Jan Karon and then for some deeper reading I’m reading about how our mind works via Dr. Caroline Leaf’s books “Switch on Your Brain: The Key to Peak Happiness, Thinking and Health,” and “Think and Eat Yourself Smart: A Neuroscienctific Approach to a Sharper Mind and Healthier Life.” I’m also reading “French Women Don’t Get Fat,” by Mireille Guiliano which I wrote about on my health blog which you can find HERE.

4) I have time to actually think about what I am eating. Both Leaf and Guiliano put emphasis on slowing down while choosing what you will eat and also while you eat. Leaf says our bodies take in nutrients better if we think about what we are eating and have a relaxed, positive attitude while eating. Standing up to eat, watching TV while we eat, talking on the phone or rushing around are all no-no’s to Guiliano and Leaf.

5) I have had time to cook some food ahead of time and freeze it to be able to pull out quickly on busy days so I don’t make bad food choices. This goes along with my effort to get healthier. I’ve made a few batches of homemade applesauce, froze some sweet peppers and some kale and also marinated some chicken in olive oil, sea salt, balsamic vinegar and garlic salt and froze that to pull out one day for dinner.

6) I have time to listen to podcasts and sermons. I enjoy listening to podcasts while I cook and I was able to do this some even when I was goofing off on Facebook but now I’m doing it even more. I mainly listen to Christian podcasts like Joseph Prince and Elevation Church. For humor I listen to The Skit Guys and for psychology I listen to Dr. Leaf (and then I spend the rest of the day talking to everyone in a South African accent and they answer me by asking me to stop talking to them in a South African accent.)

7) Time to exercise. That’s right. I’m actually exercising. Mainly just “Walking At Home” with Way-Too-Perky-Leslie Sansone. If you haven’t seen Leslie before she leads an aerobic type program of working out that mainly involves walking in place with some other movements thrown in. I like this workout in all seasons because I can actually burn some calories. If I try to walk with my children outside we have to stop like 500 times to look at bugs or see a dog or point at birds or tie our shoes or pick up leaves or wait for someone to catch up or … well, you get my drift.

I’ll list additional benefits to this break in future posts.

Things I still need to get better at, despite the Facebook break: folding the laundry faster, cleaning the kitchen after I cook, sorting through my closet and getting rid of old clothes I don’t wear anymore, consistently exercising, reading the Bible, and pondering my place in this world (which I don’t do because it sends me scurrying down the rabbit hole of thinking about how far off course my life seems from where I thought it would be by now.)

The bottom line is that so far I’m actually enjoying my time off Facebook. I’m missing knowing what’s going on with some people, but I can always catch up with them later and even call them to find out how they are.

Gasp!

I know!

Actually call someone?! Crazy!

At this point, I can’t imagine spending as much time on Facebook as I once did, even when I start signing in regularly again.

So, how about you? If you haven’t thought about a full-on, long Facebook detox, have you thought about reducing your time on it to accomplish some goals?

 

How social media sucks my life from me and why detoxes from it are needed

I’m sure some will say I’m being over dramatic and maybe they will say I just need some will power but each day I find myself having to admit what I’ve read about the addictive nature of social media is true.

One day this week, I found myself obsessed with why my blog posts weren’t updating to my business page but instead to my personal page. I was searching support pages, asking in a photography group and becoming moyre and more agitated. In the meantime my dog had slipped out of the back fence and was wandering the neighborhood and the time table for us to leave for my parents before my daughter hit nuclear meltdown before nap time was shrinking.

I had to retrieve the dog from across the street, where he could have been hit. Our plans for the rest of the day were scrapped in exchange for a nap for the almost 2- year old tornado  when we might could have left earlier and snagged the nap at my parents if I had been focused on dressing us and getting out the door and not social media. I had also been checking my Instagram account.

My obsession with my Facebook page and social media in general, not too mention my attempt to promote my photography business, was throwing my day and life off schedule, I told myself. That’s when I set up the extension on Google Chrome that lets me block sites and promptly blocked Facebook.

Enough is enough I decided. I needed my life back. I needed to get my priorities straight. One of the first ways for me to do this was to quiet all the voices yelling at me through my newsfeed. Are all those voices bad? Not all, no. Many of the messages I read on Facebook and social media are positive.

The issue is the volume of voices. They twist my head back and forth and speed up my heart as I always feel I am a step behind in my faith, my health, my parenting, my life in general.

Is Facebook evil? I don’t believe so but I do believe it can take over our life if we let it and even without us realizing it. Before we know it voices whisper to us we are not as good as someone else in our circle of friends or our chosen profession because we see their highlights day after day in our newsfeed. We don’t see the sad days, the tough moments, their feelings of failure, their insecurities, unless we read between the lines of their shares of elaborate vacations, school accomplishments, and career successes. We know they have those bad days but somehow all we can see is the good and for some reason all we can hear is someone telling us we don’t measure up and we never will.

Even if I am not feeling inadequate by what I read, I do feel like I miss out on a lot of important and in between moments in my life by wasting time scrolling through news feeds and images of the lives of others. While reading about how to improve traffic to my site and therefore my business, I may have missed my daughter smiling at me and trying to get me to smile back or maybe I made my 9 year old son feel like he shouldn’t interrupt me for a hug and a story about his school day.

Lately I’ve been thinking about all the moments I’ve missed in the lives of my children because of my addiction to likes. I enter photo contests on Facebook and find myself disappointed if I didn’t receive as many likes on my photo as someone else did on theirs. How many times have I subconsciously based my worth as a photographer, and as a person, on how many fewer likes or comments I have? Too many times is the answer.

Prior to this latest wake up call, I had been having other wake up calls to the pitfalls of social media and about a month ago I detoxed from all social media for four days. When I came back on I reduced the time I spent on it and also implemented a new personal policy that I would only check social media after I had done my devotions in the morning. My devotions consist of reading my The Upper Room and Joseph Prince devotional apps.

I also removed the Facebook and Twitter applications from my phone and blocked Facebook through my phone internet browser settings. I kept Instagram because the interaction I have with fellow photographers there is positive and less about comparison. To me it feels more like a community than Facebook.

At that time I decided if I was going to be on Facebook at all I would use that time not to just click like on posts or photographs by family and friends and those in photography groups or pages but instead work to leave encouraging comments whenever possible. Not only would this take the focus off the negative and the underlying feelings of comparison for me but I hoped, and still do hope, it will force me to look beyond myself, my tendency to whine about situations, and help others to feel like they aren’t alone and that their words and art matter. Anyone who knows me personally knows

I failed at this challenge recently when I used an entire paragraph to whine about my failed photography business so I am, by no means, perfect. I take solace in knowing I am not alone in falling to the temptation Facebook naturally creates to complain. In addition I recognize we all have bad days, sometimes feel the need to vent and share our bad times with our friends. We can’t barf rainbows all day long after all.

If you have read this far, I hope you will understand that I am not suggesting you need to change your social media habits simply because I am. I don’t believe every person who signs up for a social media account is or will become, addicted. I do believe some of us have more addictive personalities than others and therefore need to put stop gaps in place to prevent ourselves from losing sight of what is truly important in our life.

Tips for a social media break or reduction that I’ve gathered personally or from others :

  • Turn off notifications in the settings of the social media aps on your phone to keep you from feeling the need to check your social media all day long (if it’s an emergency I would hope family and friends would call instead of text);
  • Turn off the notifications you receive in your email from social media outlets, which are another way they are trying to pull you into their world and subsequently push advertising at you, for one, but also keep you addicted. Again, not saying they are evil, but it’s necessary for their business to keep people coming back. It’s more of a business strategy than a malicious one, in other words
  • Set a timer whenever you use social media so you won’t find yourself wasting time on it. Do what you want to do there and get out, in other words
  • Set up two accounts on your computer, one for personal use and one for work and use a site blocking extension like Blocksite to block social media sites on your work account.
  • Remove your social media applications from your phones and digital devices. If you simply can’t stop wasting time on Facebook or Twitter when you should be doing something else, then it is time to go cold turkey and drop the aps completely. Yes, you will experience withdrawal but you will make it. There is a good possibility what you wanted to share wasn’t that important after all.
  • Replace your online “socializing” with in person socializing. Call some friends and ask to meet some of them for lunch. Maybe you and your spouse could use all that free time you now have to reconnect (emotionally and *wink* physically)
  • Fill the time you used to spend on Facebook with a hobby, journaling, reading, exercising, cooking, earning a degree at your local college

You don’t have to quit social media cold turkey or all together. There are benefits in simply setting time limits or enacting week long detoxing sessions. Some of the benefits I noticed after even my short detox:

 

  • better focus and a clearer mind
  • accomplished more during by the day on a personal and business level
  • less stressed. when I avoided getting sucked in to mindless scrolling it kept me on schedule for tasks that needed to be done at certain times, like waking the baby up early so she naps before I have to pick my son up at the bus stop or starting dinner so it will be done before my son’s karate class.
  • my children were less stressed because I was not only less rushed but more focused on them and their needs
  • less anxiety. I wasn’t bombarded with either political negativity or articles reminding me what foods and medicines are going to kill me or my children or even articles suggesting I need to pray more (those articles are not bad but I have a guilty personality and feel constantly condemned. Yes I am aware that’s not good and yes, it is an issue God is addressing in me and yes, I’ll probably write a blog post about it someday. You’ve been warned.)

In case you need even more incentive to break your social media addiction, articles about breaking social media addictions which encouraged (naysayers will say brainwashed) me:

http://jasondoesstuff.com/social-media-detox-recap/

http://mashable.com/2014/08/09/summer-social-media-detox/#5K29iHxoqiqT

 

https://stevecorona.com/how-30-days-without-social-media-changed-my-life

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/news/social-media-addiction/

A book for moms that really encouraged me to back away from social media, though I apparently forgot its’ points recently, was The UnWired Mom – Choosing to Live Free in an Internet Addicted World

Lisa R. Howeler is a wife and mom living in a small town located in northern Pennsylvania, less than a mile from the New York State border. She is a photographer, writer, chocolate lover, and one of those Jesus freaks your mama warned you about. Find her online at http://www.lisahoweler.com; www.instagram.com/lisahoweler; and Facebook, when she’s not detoxing from it,  www.facebook.com/lisahoweler.