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Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Unplugging from the Matrix

So I did an experiment this past weekend. I wanted to see if I could go the entire weekend without logging onto Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. I decided to conduct this experiment for a few reasons:

1. I felt for a while that I am becoming too dependent on social media and my phone to entertain me during my "down" periods. When I wake up in the morning, the first thing I do is grab my phone, check my emails and then log onto my various social networking sites. If I am waiting for someone or walking somewhere, what do I do, log into social networking. Even when I am watching TV, I find myself grabbing my iPad and see what else is happening, while I'm watching TV. I think my attention span has drastically decreased due to social networking and portable technology.

2. What am I looking at?! Over the weekend, most of my friends aren't even on social networking. It seems to be more of a "during the week activity". Yet I would still log on and re-read various old updates. What am I doing? And it wasn't like once in a while I would do this. It was like ever other hour. I was afraid that I would miss something if I didn't constantly check. Don't ask me why, because what happens on the news feed stays on the news feed, forever!!

3. I needed a break. I can't explain it. I just felt like I need to get away from others. Not that I was particularly angry with anyone. I just didn't want social networking to be my primary form of communication between myself and my network of friends. So if I wanted to talk to someone, I either called them or texted with them.

I am proud to announce that I was able to accomplish this goal, and much to my shock, rather easily. I stopped at 8pm on Friday evening and did not log in again until Sunday at 10pm. I found that I didn't miss Facebook or Twitter that much. And strangely enough, I found myself more engaged in the activities I was participating in. If I was watching a movie, I was more involved in the movie. If I was cooking, I just worried about cooking. It was a different experience not being glued to my phone or iPad constantly checking on my social networking accounts. Kind of reminded me of my youth.

So I think from now on, this is going to be the standard for me. On the weekends, I take a rest from the social networking sites. I would encourage you to do the same. I think you will appreciate things a little more when you are not constantly engaged in status updates, tweeting, or what have you.

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