I know a few people who never joined social media and who use the internet wisely. What I have noticed about them is that they live happily oblivious of what is trending on the internet. They are also, the most grounded people I know. As well as strong minded and with an admirable willpower. A few years ago, I may have thought they were a bit dated and missing out on what everyone else was doing. I was wrong. I now admire their inner strength, strong personalities and leadership skills in not following the crowds who like myself went internet crazy, smartphone crazy and social media crazy. For what? Did I get anything out of it? Not at all. I lost my capacity for intellectual concentration and reading a book or watching a movie became an exercise in how long I could focus before I checked my phone in case I was missing out on some news or trending topic.
I was following people whose lives meant nothing to me, but I was still waking up to their pictures every morning. This was pretty damaging. One day I said enough and that is the day when things changed for the better. I not only started to feel better, I could focus on what was important and enjoy my life without the need to know about someone else. I stopped caring not only about well known people who use social media but also friends and acquittances. My friends are the ones I see on a regular basis or speak to on a regular basis. The rest, are just social media friends and what they are doing as reflected on their edited social media accounts, is irrelevant to my life.
I’m a mentally strong person and even for someone like myself , it took some drastic changes in order to achieve a much needed mind well-being. No healthy body can exit in an unhealthy mind and too much information, is unhealthy, damaging and adds little to the quality of your day to day life.
- STOP BINGE WATCHING TV SERIES
I haven’t had a television since the year 2008 and I have lived happily and tv less until the television was available online. It was then, that I joined the binge watching crowd by watching my favourite tv shows. Yes, they were good shows. Really good writing, acting and directing but were they really improving my life?, was I feeling better after binge watching episode after episode? Was it making me feel good that the highlight of my day was to get home and eat dinner while watching my favourite tv series? Not at all. As a result, I no longer watch tv series, or have a subscription to Netflix. Watching “Game of the Thrones” for days on end is now my idea of hell and I have no interest whatsoever in watching one single episode. Staring at a computer on a sunny day is the same as vegetating and allowing life to pass you by. Do yourself a favour and turn it all off, because to switch on, you must first switch off.
- UNFOLLOW SOCIAL MEDIA ACCOUNTS OR QUIT
If you use social media, you are probably following celebrities with large social media following or famous influencers promoting brands and their lifestyle . Worth it? . Absolutely not. Unfollow them and declutter your social media and your mind and stop wasting time watching what other people are up to . Also notice how the most mundane accounts are the ones with large following. Follow what inspires you, what drives you, what makes you feel good or just quit social media altogether, after all, it is just one form of entertainment with questionable value. Any 7 year old with a smartphone can create content for it these days. I no longer care about being constantly exposed to other people edited life on social media that is doing so much damage to people’s confidence by comparing themselves to others.
- TURN MOBILE DATA OFF
Even the CEO of Apple Tim Cook is concerned about our “abuse” of the use we make of the smartphone . The smartphone is there to make things easier , to improve a little bit daily life tasks. However, it is pretty much taking over our lives. We use it far too much. It is already an addiction from which people can’t detoxify unless they try really hard. It has to be done. I have now gone on a pay as you go contract with limited internet data hence if I use it too much, I would be paying extortionate fees for my internet usage. I no longer use it when out and about. I don’t really need to take a picture of everything that happens in my day to day or feel the need to share it online. My memory is enough to store it all in the book of life.
- DON’T CONSTANTLY READ THE NEWS
I work as a freelance journalist so I can’t avoid reading the news on a regular daily basis but otherwise, there is no need to do this because more often than not, they are bad news, depressing news . Life is not a path of roses but if you focus on your life and improving the community you live in, you will be making a greater change than by worrying about things beyond your control such as hurricanes, terrorist attacks, corrupt politicians or royal weddings.
- FOCUS ON YOUR LIFE
It may seem irrelevant, unimportant, boring and a bit mundane but it is after all, your life. The only one you have, the only one you will ever have. Happiness is a state of mind and a clear mind will help you value what you have and how to make the most of it. There will always be someone who you think has a more exciting and better life, but wishing you could have what they have will only make you unhappy. Also , you can never judge a book by its cover and every single human being on this earth regardless of his or her situation does suffer, does get ill, and does have problems. They may not be your problems but they will have their own kind of problems. Focus on your life to at least never regret that you were not living it because you were not present, because you were always worried or wanted to know what others were doing.
Taking some small steps that initially felt like missing my morning coffee, Im not only happier, but my concentration has improved,I am more productive, and I feel more at peace with myself and my life.