We Are On a Break

I do not know about you, but with all the negativity in the world these days, I have had to step away from social media. I’ve even heard the term “doomsurfing” being used, meaning we are bombarded with sad, disturbing and negative content constantly, it’s a rabbit hole really that we are falling into.

What is too much social media?  When do we need to walk away, or reassess the content we are taking in? Is social media fatigue really a thing?

Social media fatigue can be defined as “a users’ tendency to pull back from social media when they become overwhelmed with too many social media sites, too many friends and followers” (Techopedia, 2020).

Social media can be a wonderful tool, it can connect you with loved ones, and it can connect you to your passions in life.  It can also be overwhelming, stressful, and can lead to anxiety or ever sleep deprivation (Ervolino, 2017).

Image Source

So what have I gained by stepping away from social media for short periods of time during this pandemic?  It has allowed me to reset. It has allowed me to prioritize the content I am absorbing. It has forced me to connect with my friends and family in a more traditional way.  And by traditional I mean, I have even sent out greeting cards to the seniors in my life who may be feeling a little more isolated.  My eight year old niece and I are pen pals at the moment.  The excitement she gets from receiving a letter in the mail are the simple joys in life that are worth the anticipation, and can not be replicated through social media the same way.

After putting a pause on social media, I find that I actually look forward to logging on, and catching up with what is going on online.  By regularly taking these small breaks, I find that the social media fatigue I had been experiencing is not as dramatic and overwhelming.

Have you had to just step away from social media, and what did you learn by doing so?

Sources:
Ervolino, B. (2017, October 19). Everybody is exhausted: Stress and social media are taking their toll. Retrieved June 12, 2020, from https://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/health/ct-social-media-exhaustion-20171019-story.html

What is Social Media Fatigue? – Definition from Techopedia. (n.d.). Retrieved June 12, 2020, from https://www.techopedia.com/definition/27372/social-media-fatigue

Social media posts:
Twitter: Social media fatigue does exist. https://bit.ly/2Y0mIxp #SocialMedia #socialmediafatigue #negative #fatigue #stress #anxiety

Facebook: Are you suffering from social media fatigue? https://bit.ly/2Y0mIxp #SocialMedia #socialmediafatigue #negative #fatigue #stress #anxiety

4 thoughts on “We Are On a Break

  1. I was really drawn by the title, as I was really thinking about a break. Looking out at what seems like the perfect day to connect with nature and family. Sometimes we need to be reminded that life is around us. I like the way you described how taking pauses from social media helps reduce fatigue. We all could use this sense of mindfulness right now.

  2. I’ve been on a break too. Well, mostly from Facebook and Covid related news on YouTube. I had to unrecommend Covid news about 5 times before YouTube got the message. After doing so, I’ve been a lot happier during these dark months.

  3. I have not stepped away from social media as it is an important part of the work I do. Ironically and due to the pandemic, I have found myself following the US news on TV and in my threads. It started with Trevor Noah but then expanded to Anderson Cooper. I realized that I was getting an addiction to it when I started to PVR Trevor, Anderson and, hey, why not, Cuomo, and Seth…maybe a little Jimmy Fallon. Suddenly, STOP! rang through my head. I definitely needed to take a break from the doom and gloom.

  4. Unfortunately, as someone who is addicted to social media, I can’t say I have taken a break. I do however take breaks from talking to people on social media. Sometimes I like to be left alone in my thoughts, sometimes I don’t like being so accessible. Everything you described, however- with the “doomsurfing” – is the exact reason I stopped watching big news broadcasters. That is all they would show and since I have stopped watching the news I feel much happier. Perhaps taking a break from social media would produce a similar feeling.

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