I’m guessing you saw the title of this post and were wondering what.the.hell has been going on over here lately. I promise, it’s not some weird California KoolAid that I’m drinking. In fact, the slogan for this experiment happens to be, “like a juice cleanse, minus the green junk” because I can’t stand the thought of choking down kale/broccoli/spinach/cayenne in regular form, much less juiced and in gallon quantities. But I digress. This cleanse is more mental, and you can eat as much ice cream as you want. That all being said…
Welcome to the Social Media Cleanse.
I’ve had a lot of conversations lately about some of the drawbacks to social media and where it/the blogging communities are headed: namely, about the oversaturation and the noise. Sometimes, it just feels like you’ve got 30,000+ people in your head and they’re all screaming at you and everyone wants your attention all at once and OMGLOUDNOISES!! Add to that the trolls, the entitled jerks, the self-important/self-righteous/ignoramouses and sometimes, you just want to quit it all. But for me personally, and I’m sure for a lot of you, social media can be a really good thing too. It can mean a lot of referrals (thanks, social media!), a lot of good online friendships, great readers, support groups for things like dieting, entrepreneurship, etc., education (yay for teh googlez!), and of course, keeping up with people you went to high school with and their 2nd marriages and 3.5 kids.
Regardless of why you’re using it, the key to making social media work for you is to find the right balance for you, and to keep it from becoming that icky toxic monster that creeps up on you when you’ve got your back turned. Out of that came the idea for a social media cleanse. The concept is simple:
- clear your social media followings of people who make you feel bad about yourself, trigger negative emotional reactions, or cause you to feel bad about the world in general
- allow yourself to unfollow/unfriend/unsubscribe without feeling guilty, or the nagging “coulda/shoulda/woulda/what if’s” that so often come with doing so
- prevent yourself from monitoring unfollows so that you don’t feel bad when people in turn unfollow you (most likely out of spite, anyways)
- watch how your interactions improve, become more positive, and you become more positive!
You’ll notice that these are not rules. I’m not here to tell you what youshoulddo or what youhave to do. My goal behind the social media cleanse is providing you with tips and resources that have been working for me and others in improving our online/offline interactions, and that might prove useful to you too. You can implement all, some, or none of them- but I’d love to hear what does and doesn’t work for you guys, and especially what you think of the things that youdotry!
Since it’s Friday, I have a little (mini) homework assignment for Day 1 of the Cleanse. And no, you won’t get detention for not doing it, unless you like that sort of thing.
Day 1 Homework
1. Think about the 3 things that impact you the most negatively on social media on a regular basis. These might be triggers like: political debates, “mommy wars,” people posting cat photos, people reposting their blog posts 10x a day, your coworker who you really dislike posting a bunch of stuff on facebook, etc.
Then think about how you can remove these from your online life. Can you unfollow the person? Can you leave a group? Can you unsubscribe from their updates? You don’t have to take any actions this weekend. Just think about it. And if you start getting those panicky feelings, grab a glass of wine and shoot me a message.
I’d LOVE if you’d leave me a comment, even in super vague terms, of what those 3 “negativity triggers” are for you.I have a feeling that there will be a lot in common across the board!