Reflection: I feel like I have been wasting a lot of time on Facebook and this challenge forced me to think a little bit about how I am using my time. I did spend more time on Instagram and Twitter (I still don't get Snapchat, lol) but I find these platforms to be really different in terms of time-suckage. On Instagram, I find myself scrolling through the pictures, but there are not things to click on so, it is easier to limit- once I've seen all the pictures, I've seen all the pictures. Twitter, of course, can be a black hole of time-suckage too, if you let it. I think, because I don't actually follow all that many people and I don't spend my time actually tweeting, it is more manageable. Twitter is much less personal than facebook, and although I follow some people that I actually know, the majority of people I follow are reporters and famous people and I'm just generally less interested in spending all my time reading all about their lives.
My month off facebook coincidentally coincided with the big Cambridge Analytica scandal and a lot of people leaving facebook, but my decision to do it now had nothing to do with that. It was interesting to think about how much of our lives are being tracked and how that data is being used. It is something I am still thinking about.
What I felt like I was missing the most from facebook in my month off was actually personal connections with people I actually know, but might not see all that often. There are a certain percentage of my friends that I don't see/talk to too much in real life, but don't want to completely loose track of. Not being on facebook also made it harder to see people in real life. More and more now, events and invitations are going on facebook and I know that I missed at least one event that I might have gone to if I had known about it. I made an effort to make sure that I didn't really miss too much- mostly by texting people that I knew were organizing things, but this felt like a pain. I am part of two book clubs currently and both of them organize events and meetings on facebook. We don't meet at the same time/place every month, instead, we discuss plans in the facebook groups. Normally it is easy to engage in these conversations- I think if I had to rely on texting to stay up on things every month it would drive me crazy. I even almost missed a meeting because I got confused about the location when I was texting with my friend and went to the wrong movie theater- this probably wouldn't have happened if I'd been able to just look at the facebook event.
The real question is what I am spending my time doing? Facebook (and Twitter and Instagram and everything else) can be good tools for keeping up on people's lives and knowing what is going on in the world and making plans. Where it gets to be dangerous is the constant scrolling that wastes time and doesn't actually serve a purpose or improve life. So because of this, I am changing it up for April. Originally, I planned on making April a sugar free month (cutting out added sugar from my diet) and I've been feeling pretty nervous about it. Honestly, it is something I want to do, but something that I need to kind of psych myself up for. But since these are my challenges and I make the rules, I've decided to do something else. I have been thinking a lot about how I use my time and getting off facebook was a part of that, but not the whole story. So my challenge for April is 30 min project time.
Rules for 30 day challenge #4- 30 min project time:
Spend 30 min each day working on a short or long term project in the house. This can be anything that is not a normal daily task (basic cleaning, dishes, laundry etc) and cannot be on the computer or phone. Examples/ideas: finish my scrap books, making art, spring cleaning (cleaning closets, going through boxes in storage) etc. Let's be more productive in April!