So, the title of this post does not actually mean that social media has disappeared, but it does mean that for me, at this very moment in time, social media is gone.
I decided to delete my social media—Instagram, Facebook, Messenger and Snapchat, off my phone because I found out a lot of information that scared me. Scared me enough to delete them.
My dad works in a marketing business, he explained to me that social media sites take your information and sell it. You know that agreement you sign when you download a social media app or get a new phone? Yeah, well in that agreement on like the 175th page out of 230 (just a guess) it says that they are allowed to distribute your information. That's one way for them to make money. The other way is advertisements. Have you ever had that moment where you're scrolling through Instagram and that specific dishwasher soap you were discussing with your friends mum shows up? We all just act like it's a weird coincidence or we say something but everyone forgets by the next day. Well, Siri, Alexa and Google are listening to you all the time. Then they provide this information to your social media.
These companies no longer have to really do anything, expect keep everything in check and make sure that algorithm is working. This is because we are co-producing all their information. Like IKEA for instance—I know there are a lot of examples, but this is the reason I've left. In IKEA, we have to go around and look at the show room, we then have to load the flat-packed items on to our trolley, we then go home and build it ourselves. Think of Instagram, if we didn't post, there would be no information for it to work. We are basically a free workforce.
The anxiety and depression that comes with these social medias is astonishing. We are all so focused on what other people's lives are like. "Oh, look at Kim K. Doesn't she look amazing? Wish I looked like that," "OMG, I would die to be her." etc. etc. The actual affects of social media on our health is awful. We are sucked into believing false truths about other people's lives, wishing we were like that or had their life and not appreciating what we actually have. We body-shame, we read and see nasty things on a daily basis or we say mean or nasty things to ourselves because we become envious of other people.
For some reason, none of this sits well with me. These companies are all completely right sided, they do not care for us, they care for our time, and that time creates more income for them. I do not like being exploited daily. I do not like being in a trance of scrolling and tapping. It's bad for my health, for my brain, and for my eyes. And don't forget about your actual, real world social life. Interactions in this day an age are barely occurring. We sit in a room with our friends, on our phones, sending them things! We hardly talk without our phones.
So, yesterday, I decided to take all of it off my phone and see how much time I get from doing this. See how different the world is. Older generations may think I'm crazy thinking that social media controls me so much, but this is the world we live in. You, your kids, your grandkids, everyone you probably know has a phone (11+). Doesn't that say something? We rely on technology too much. Yes, it is an amazing invention, but it is now out of hand. We are ADDICTED to our phones. It is an addiction. No matter what people say, you probably pick up your phone 200 times a day, maybe just to check the time, or look at google maps, but you're still relying on this.
Taking down my social media actually gave me anxiety. I didn't even delete my accounts, I deleted them off my phone. I still had a pounding heart and I was panicking. Yes, it sounds insane, but if you don't believe me, try it.
I have already started doing more yoga, I have made breakfast and a coffee for myself for the first time since summer. I feel good in myself.
The only social media I have decided to keep is WhatsApp because of connections with family and friends in other countries, but other than that, I'M FREE!
I hope that this inspires you to do the same.