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  • Writer's pictureasj

Too much social media? YEP.

There is such thing as too much social media.

It's hard work to create substantive, compelling, shareable content. It's *harder* to filter out the "sugar"-- the outrageous, sad, awful, occasionally funny but inane stuff.

And that is exhausting, emotionally and mentally. It's helpful to look out the window for awhile, log off totally, and give yourself a break.

I'm not one to give advice (for the most part, I say you do you). But I saw someone else post this as a comment earlier, and it just stayed with me:

Don't post that sh*t on the internet.

(I'm adding as a corollary-- give yourself a break from the internet.)

Don't post that sh*t on the internet. Yes. YES! There

are some things to keep to yourself. There are some things to talk about in person, with friends or with colleagues.

Things where inflection matters, where facial expression and body language and non-verbal meaning matter, where your personality and your personal history matter (which not everyone on the internet knows). Where context matters.

There are some things that should not be posted on the internet. Sometimes the internet is not the place to have a conversation. I know that's controversial, but I think it's true.

This commenter was talking about another comment advocating, in essence, vigilante justice. She *agreed* with the sentiment behind the comment. Someone had been hurt and she sympathized. But she saw that it was something that shouldn't be posted on the internet.

Should not be posted on the internet. It was a righteous comment! That she basically agreed with! Still shouldn't be posted on the internet!

Interesting and refreshing idea, right? That not every single thing needs to be published on the internet?

As far as giving yourself a break from the internet: I'm saying this for friends, colleagues, and anyone who has gotten anxious, depressed, or otherwise felt their healthy selves slipping away after too much internet: Give yourself a total break from Facebook and the internet. Give yourself a big deep slow breath.

Just close the tab and don't come back for a few days. I know people who live perfectly great lives without it. If you're worried a friend will be mad if you don't like every one of their posts, 1. maybe they're not such a great friend? 2. give them a call or an email to say hi.

Annoyed that some people seem to only share what's shiny and happy? Some people use FB to connect with job opportunities and work friends. So they're not going to publish every crappy thing that happens. That is ok!

Annoyed that some people seem to share every crappy thing? Yes, there are people who feel like they make great connections when they share what's hard personally. That is a-ok too! Sometimes it can even be beautiful and cathartic. Post what feels true to you.

Just remember--sometimes it's actually more of a relief to tell yourself- "Don't post that sh*t on the internet. It doesn't belong on the internet." Especially when it's not your personal story to tell.

It's ok to take a break from advocacy via posts on the internet. It's ok to choose what you say and where you say it. It's wise, even.

Keep some things for yourself. Let some sh*t go, for your own health and well-being and because life is short. Keep some things to talk about with friends and with colleagues.

And then take a walk and contemplate the leaves on trees and cracks in sidewalks and things. Consider the lilies; I'll be doing the same.

This was taken not super long ago; it wasn't that long ago that the internet wasn't so consuming. Good to take this in as regularly as possible, and to try to get outdoors as much as I'm in front of a screen. Even though screentime is work time, and work is important, looking at a horizon is important, too.

Cliff by the ocean

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