I’m Deleting Social Media… Again

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Fixated. Powerless. Distracted and not in control…

My initial trial in giving up social media felt like a lifestyle choice. I wanted to change my behavior and self-perception; social media content was directly getting in the way of that. Right around the same time though, I started writing and blogging. Obviously, this made me more inclined to use social networks to help facilitate and enable my writing. In turn, I painted social media in a more opportunistic light.

Take Social Media For What It Is: Addictive

The addictive lure of Internet use is of discernible, growing concern. You don’t have to look far to find an article addressing it (after all, you’re reading one right now). But awareness, or realization, that people are using social media more and more is not the issue. In fact, this is relatively useless in regards to a healthy connection with the online world. I’m indisputable, living proof that “awareness” pales in comparison to biological, psychological, and social factors.

The real problem lies in social media’s representation — an endless stream of dopamine, preoccupation, and comfort — not necessarily its visible content.

By their very nature, sites like Facebook and Twitter engage part of the brain responsible for social interaction. Over thousands of years, humans have evolved to understand social stimuli as vital to survival (e.g. analyzing a threat or sexual partner). Such encounters and judgements are non-negotiable. Thus, your brain is programmed to place social media high on the scale of importance, hence the reason many people have a natural proclivity to use it obsessively.

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The Perfect Excuse

To me, it feels like my phone, in general, is a massive crutch—something I turn to for information, motivation, and even comfort. Heightened dependency is an obvious by-product of increased integration of technology. This dynamic can be illustrated by the Apple Watch user who no longer runs without it, or the teenager who can’t resist Snapchat at a live event.

The lines between utility and unhinged dependence are blurring.

Social media exacerbates the disasters looming within this reality; it appears communal, constant, and relevant, giving us the perfect excuse to continually find solace in it. The degree to which we, as a people, might become physically and psychologically reliant on it should not be overlooked. The ramifications are steep. It doesn’t take a genius to connect the dots, either.

Failed Attempts At Regulating Social Media

Of course I’ve tried to minimize all the noise. I really have.

Bored, uneducated, homeless — em dashes are my specialty. I write what I see, think, and feel. That’s it.

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