Thursday, April 27, 2017

Why I Took a Break From Social Media

Just over a month ago, I needed a break from social media. Big time. I felt like I'd done all I'd intended to do by being on the major online platforms and now they were distracting me from writing fiction--my true calling.

So, as an early birthday present to myself, I deleted my Twitter account, deactivated my Pinterest and Instagram accounts, and deactivated my Facebook account. I tried to delete my Google+ account, but since I'm on Blogger, it messed things up.

How did my break go?

Great! I finished the first draft of a novel that needed my full writing attention. I finished the homeschool year fully engaged. My days were filled with mental white space and my creativity flourished. I took a writing class and thoroughly enjoyed it. And I started reading fiction for pleasure again. It's nice having my brain back!

On the down side, I had an assigned admin on Facebook for my author page and the page for a homeschool website I run. My admin was getting the notifications from my Facebook pages and would let me know. I'd have to jump on to respond anyway, so it took up time for two people. I also got emails from people asking me to come back to Facebook and reviewers and author friends asking why I wasn't sharing their posts about me. (Kind of a common courtesy and since my author page was still up, it looked like I was ignoring them.)

I'm so glad for my break! And I'm not jumping back in full blazes. Never will. I plan to keep my email list as my preferred way of engaging with readers and email/text/phone calls as my preferred communication with colleagues, friends, and family. But for work reasons, it appears I should keep my Facebook account activated.

Activated and all-consuming are two different things.

That's the main point I learned in all this. My mind settled with not staring at a news feed all day, and I plan to keep it that way. I like not having to see everyone's every thought and worry and meal. I like not feeling like I'm missing something if I don't read all the posts in certain groups everyday.

Now for the social part of social media... have you ever gotten so swamped with things that are designed to feel urgent that you struggle to accomplish what is important? 

I can't be the only one :)