Giving up on Social Media

It’s no secret that I love social media. And my friends love it too. We love it so much, that when we hang out in real life, at any moment, someone in the group is checking Twitter. It’s the norm, and it’s stupid.

Twitter and Facebook have changed the way that I interact with the world. I moved to Charleston in September knowing almost no one and, through Twitter, I’ve made so many friends that I’m lucky to have. Twitter is also how I met @noaheverett and eventually got involved with Twitpic. There’s no doubt that I owe so much to social media, but it’s consuming my life.

Plain and simple, it’s a distraction. I’m constantly devouring information, whether it’s what Ryan is having for lunch or an interesting TED talk about paper towels (seriously, it’s awesome, watch it). I’ve become an information addict.

I’m at a crossroad. I just turned 25 and while I’m extremely proud of what I’ve done, I know that I could have accomplished so much more. Sure, there’re plenty of reasons why, but it all comes back to being a chronic consumer, and not a producer. I’m too busy at the buffet to weed the garden- simply put, I’m just not creating enough value in my life.

Here’s what I’m doing about it

  • I’m off Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, Hacker News, and RSS until June 15th.
  • I’ve uninstalled Twitter for Mac, Twitter for iOS, and Tweetbot.
  • I’ve blocked the sites from my computer using the hosts file.
  • Set Facebook to email me event invitations (hey, I’m not trying to commit social suicide).

Sure, it’s only 30 days, but it’s enough to build a habit of not being constantly attached.

I’m cutting out major streams of information and distraction. I’ll still be reading articles, blogs, and communicating with my friends- but it’ll be something that I do consciously and thoughtfully. With less information to consume, I’ll be able to focus on producing valuable content on my blog and in my life.