Last month, a mere 2 weeks before our moving date, my family spent a long weekend on Prince Edward Island (PEI). This might sound crazy until you consider that the last time we moved, we went on an 11-day family vacation to Ontario and returned home FOUR DAYS before our moving date.
The PEI trip is an almost-annual event. Friends of ours spend most of August at a cottage there, and we always try to make it up for at least a few days. But this trip was especially memorable, and here’s why:
I spent most of the trip off of the internet.
Now don’t get me wrong, I took my computer. And I did use it. I even hopped onto iTunes for a shopping spree (so fun!). But I unplugged from the daily…OK, fine, hourly…OK, fine constant checking of email and FB.
And it was fabulous. I breathed more deeply, stood my ground more confidently, relaxed more luxuriously, and generally felt more myself, and happier in that self-ness. In fact, the one time I did check email and FB, I immediately felt myself getting anxious and lifting out of myself. That day, I swore that I would spend at least one day a week offline forever more….
…and then I got home, and I fell right back into the daily grind of compulsive checking, even when I was supposed to be packing madly.
But today I had enough. Today I spent the morning getting angrier and angrier…at Facebook, at people on my list, at things people were sharing. On and on and on and on…until I threw up my hands and kicked myself off of Facebook (I admit that I didn’t kick myself off of Twitter, but that’s because I haven’t developed the same kind of addiction to Twitter as I have to FB…not yet, anyway). It didn’t make me feel 100% better, but it did highlight the hours I spend aimlessly scrolling.
I don’t know why I’m sharing this…I’m not going to grandly announce that I Will Never Check FB Again or that I Am Taking A Month-Long Digital Sabbatical. I guess I’m sharing because I have a feeling that I’m not alone in the way the social aspects of the Internet affect me, and I feel like the more people point it out, the more aware we’ll be. This week I’m going to be rethinking how I spend my time online and how being online affects my energy and my emotions. I feel like social media (particularly Facebook) and I are developing a bit of a toxic relationship, and I don’t like it. I’d like to make a change.