I’ve been ruminating over the last week and a bit on me and social media. I took a week off. I was on holiday and access to electricity was limited, it was a decision both dictated by circumstances and by a desire to see if I could actually do it. My relationship with social media is primarily one of lurking less sharing. I am a bit of a voyeur. I tell myself it’s about keeping informed. Initially, I considered a week off an easy prospect but decided to remove temptation and delete the relevant apps on my phone.
The temptation didn’t materialise.
Circumstances contributed to that, less the lack of electricity more sunshine and blue skies. We spent a week away and I wanted to concentrate on family, grab every last moment of my last week with my boy before school. As it was he found a pal in the family sharing the field with us and once he was out of bed he was gone. Running races, exploring, building sand castles in the sand pit, towing his new friend around in a trolley. Simple golden pleasures, away from TV’s and computers. Picture postcard childhood activities, the things as a parent I wish for when despairing over another ‘discussion’ about the TV. To have been ‘catching up’ with the world of social media beyond our bubble of holiday loveliness would have been wrong. It was good to just be in the moment. Enjoy the space in front of me, watching my son play from behind a cup of tea, rather than trying to see a whole world of other stuff, other lives via an app. I didn’t wonder, as I do at home, what might be happening on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram. On one or two occasions I thought it would be nice to share a moment via instagram but instead kept things close rather than broadcast outwards.
Once home I expected I’d itch for information from the super highway, but there seemed so much to do in gearing down from a holiday and gearing up for school it felt good not to throw into the mix the juggle of adding social media and gave the days a lighter feel.
I missed writing, for sure and catching up on the blogosphere. I crept on to Facebook late one evening after my self-imposed week had passed. Seeing all that others had been doing over the week induced a crisis of blogging confidence and wondered if it was worth returning to my blog. It’s my small space and comparing and contrasting isn’t always helpful. I did miss my blog, enough to know how important it is for me. Space away has inevitably given a fresh perspective and I’m hoping to find sometime over the next while to think about this blog; it’s shape and form. I imagine it will just trundle on much as it always does, just one small space on the internet.
It’s good to put the phone down and live in the moment and I’m trying to do that more. A few days later and I’m back in the swing of the everyday, browsing and checking and lurking on social media is a diversion from chores and a window on a world beyond the grey of September. I’m catching up with the online people I’ve come to consider friends. It’s been interesting to consider how in the last week I’ve quickly returned to the place I was. I feel, slightly, that I spent too much time on social media but yet I don’t feel that I spend enough time, make enough of a contribution to it all. I don’t have enough conversations, usually because I lack the time. Or respond enough to others tweets. My updates aren’t that interesting or funny, more random and infrequent. It’s an awkward relationship and yet one I don’t want to give up on. Social media and me. The odd couple.
I’d be interested to know how other people manage their social media habit? For good or bad?