Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Living Life Outside Social Media

Note to self:

There is life outside of blogs, twitter, and facebook.  Yep.  I said it.

Like many others, I feel I have been sucked in to this crazy world of blogging, twitter, and facebook. Granted I feel like twitter* is the newer and easier facebook, but twitter sucks you right in too. I've only been on twitter for 3 1/2 months and sometimes I really do need to take a step back and remember what life was like before I joined in. Now this is nothing against twitter or any social media realms, but lately I have been overwhelmed with the many "vote for me", "check out what I just did", "I need 600 followers" messages (and I'm sure I've been guilty of this as well at some point). Honestly before I joined these outlets, I thought they were about telling people what you had for lunch :). I've realized that although this world may seem huge, it really is much smaller than we would think, and as I sit here night after night working on my blog posts, or tweeting, or "liking" something on facebook, my husband sits over on the couch reading his book, watching his Criminal Minds or checking his emails when we could be doing something together, going for a walk, getting out of the house, or even enjoying one of our favorite shows together without my mind thinking (do I have a post for tomorrow?)

My point is - life is too short to be holed up on the computer or with your blackberry/iPhone in hand at all times. I almost want to go back a step and get an old school flip-phone to replace my blackberry! Imagine what it would be like without the red blinking light coming on every 5 minutes? Emails can wait. Clients can and will call you, or better yet, you can call them or meet in person.  Of course this isn't to say drop everything you're doing, I know we're all working a million miles a minute on our daily lives, and our clients are top priority - when it comes to work. But I'm also saying that there are real humans who we can be spending real time with and twitter/facebook will continue on with or without us - and I can guarantee your real social media friends will still be there when you return. But if you make a conscious effort to spend less time tweeting and more time living, I guarantee you will be a happier person. And I'm going to give it a whirl :)

P.S. - If you want a reality check to help you appreciate real life, you have to check out this blog.  Hands down, it is my favorite out of any blogs I have ever read.  When I see a new post in my inbox, I get happy.  That's how amazing Kelle Hampton is, and her blog is just a reality check of what life is all about.

*side note - I can't even tell you how amazing it has been to meet all of these amazing people through social media, so I am ever-so-thankful for that.  I have expanded my network to include new friends from all over the world, and contacts for my brides spanning the US and beyond.  I just need to learn a new way to manage it all while staying true to myself :)

21 comments:

  1. i'm totally with you on this one! social media has gotten a little out of hand. yet here we are tweeting and writing/reading blog posts at 11pm. oh the irony :P

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  2. I caved and just joined Twitter. The FBT (facebook, blog, twitter) sure does give addiction a real run for its money. Thank you for this post, it needs a love button :) Hugs, M

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  3. What a great post! Now, I am left alone by my hubby (thanks to the military) so I love social media but I totally understand how easy it is to forget real life when we tweet or check Facebook a million times a day! We can't help it, but true life awaits us outside of the walls we live in! Thank you for the real life reminder!

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  4. I like this post and can definitely relate! Thanks for sharing.

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  5. Wow! I couldn't have put it better myself :)
    I deactivated my Facebook account at the beginning of February as means of a mini-social experiment & also as I was becoming increasingly aware of how it was changing the way I communicate with people, e.g. less phone calls as I'd checked their Facebook page for 2 minutes & therefore felt I was up to date with their news etc. The scary thing is it just happened, it wasn't until I took a step back that I realised how much I missed chatting/writing/even e-mailing these people as opposed to finding out their news via a status update.
    I was chatting to a shop assistant the other day whom when I told her I'd deactivated my Facebook exclaimed in shock horror, "Oh...I could NEVER live without Facebook!" That comment alone was enough to make me realise what a hold these new forms of social media can have on people, it's actually quite scary!
    Life without Facebook has been amazing, I've started my blog which I find a lot more constructive at the end of a day, & I've also started telephoning people more & even sending hand written letters to friends overseas (Old School) :)
    My husband has never had a Facebook & I honestly don't believe he'll ever sign up, despite telling him he lives in the dark ages I almost admire his will power & stance that Facebook is the root of all evil, Ha!
    I'll more than likely hit Facebook again soon, as whilst I continue to study the ease of it for communication is second to none! Will I remain on it after I finish studying however? Probably not :)
    Thanks for posting about this topic, I'm sure it's something people think about yet rarely discuss in forums such as this!
    Oh & apologies for the essay, I've been thinking about it a lot of late!
    Rx

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  6. It def can be difficult to try and balance it all out, esp when you work from your computer or earn your money from what you do on the computer. Last night my husband came home and I usually stay downstairs on the big computer to finish up but instead we watched tv together while I did some work from the laptop! But it was nice last weekend getting away from it all and going to our friends house for the weekend and not even looking at a single email, tweet, or status update on facebook!

    Its a great post many of us need to read. Have a lovely day Jacin and Pat!

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  7. So glad you think taking a step back is worth it. All I can manage now with the wedding is the blog and the wedding and a job. I don't facebook, twitter or anything else because I'd rather call or meet people personally, too. Hope you like your extra time away from digital!

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  8. I am guilty of this too!! I only started blogging in November... But I treat it more like my day job than my actual day job. Which is bad. Real bad somedays. But even before that I had facebook up at work all day long! And I dabbled in twitter for a year or so... All this social media is sucking the social out of the world. The real SOCIAL... haha.

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  9. Such a great post and reality check! It is so true that we all get stuck behing our computers way too often and should take a step back and enjoy other things in life.

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  10. I just got my smart phone and I do love it but yes...between that and the lap top sometimes it's just too much! I just try to make a conscious effort to put it down and step away sometimes.

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  11. I completely agree with this post :) In fact I gave up Facebook a week ago. I'm trying to go an entire month; I don't know if I'll make it but even if I don't it has been an interesting week so far. I've had to text/call people to catch up more than I would have otherwise. And the reactions from my friends as they've noticed I'm not on Facebook anymore have been interesting to say the least ;) Of course, although I had a huge presence on Facebook I didn't actually spend a TON of time on there...I was never a "profile stalker", for instance. So the other aspects of my life haven't changed drastically as I really only have maybe another 15 minutes a day to spare.

    http://aserendipitouslife.blogspot.com

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  12. so true, so true. my hubs & i try to eat dinner & walk the dog together every night. it's not as easy as it sounds! i'm on fb & twitter & he's not . . . he's probably the smarter one!

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  13. I was just thinking about this yesterday, Jacin. Because I feel like I am glued to my computer ALL THE TIME. And it would be nice to o other tihngs every once in a while :) Great post, friend xoxo

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  14. What a great post! Thank you for sharing it! :) It's scary to think about how reliant our culture is getting on social media - me included! At the beginning of the semester my boyfriend dared me to go a month without facebook on my iphone because he didn't think I could do it. Of course I had to prove him wrong, and since then I've kept facebook off my phone - it's a small step, but it makes me glad and I'm better off without checking it 23481741 times a day! haha.

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  15. So TRUE! It's super hard, as I realize how much I do it...I even decided against bringing my computer to my inlaws so I couldn't work...yet here I am writing posts and checking emails on their computer. It's a struggle to find a happy balance.

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  16. It's definitely easy to forget about the outside world! The internet & the iphone take over. And that line about your husband watching Criminal Minds while you're blogging... um that couldn't be more close to what goes on in my house! So funny!

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  17. When I first started blogging, there was an internet video with a bride and groom updating their FB relationship statuses at the altar or some equally appalling nonsense. And I wrote, "It still happened, whether or not you Tweet it".

    While I know we are delighted by the relationships we've made through Twitter, it's hard when a friend tweets, "Where on Earth have you been?" Sometimes a girl's just gotta live, so she has something interesting to tweet about!

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  18. So true- I even find myself putting my own wedding planning aside to write up a new blog post, to keep up with twitter, etc. All this sometimes even results in not getting enough sleep! I slowly find myself not checking my personal FB page and communicating with family across the states and best friends I grew up with to check my blog FB page instead. Sad but true. This couldn't have come at a better time. Thank you once again for your awesome words of wisdom!! =)

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  19. Agreed. I love the blogosphere, but we can't forget to live in the real world too. Glad you've found that balance :)

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  20. LOL I'm just reading this post because I decided to do the same thing about 2 weeks ago when I was a little overwhelmed by my life in the computer. A post here & there (pre-scheduled) & I haven't even signed into twitter in over a week. It's kinda awesome, not gonna lie. I wish I had thought to give it up for lent.

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