With social media becoming such a large part of our lives I thought it was time to pull back.
Note to Gina: I will not log on to social media, generate a text or a phone call for the remainder of the week. Today is Tuesday, (15 December) only six days until the beginning of the week based on the premise Monday is the beginning of the week.
The first two days of abstinence were difficult. A number of times I had to stop myself from picking up the mobile phone and checking for missed calls or messages. In hindsight, I should have hidden the phone under the bed so it was out of sight rather than leaving it in full view on the kitchen bench!
By day 2, panic set in. What if I’d missed an important call or text message from the children? Surprisingly, when I checked my phone I had only one message (an invitation for pre-Christmas drinks) and no missed calls. Where was everybody? Last minute Christmas shopping?
Day 3 and I noticed something extraordinary – I had more time on my hands than usual. I finished reading the book I’d abandoned mid-way, I started mind plotting my next book and I was eating less, exercising more and drinking less coffee.
The Side Effects
It is widely documented that an unhealthy reliance on social media may lead to depression. But read on…this is scary. There is another side effect with more serious consequences. Let’s face it, we’re all guilty of Internet stalking, but a few social media followers have taken it a step further: they’ve used their online profiles to kill. (See my previous post, Suicide by Text).
In a world dominated by digital communication, posting the wrong status update can be fatal. Check this out. But be warned; these cases may disturb you.
Q. We are social beings. Are you with me on this?
A. For most of us, yes that’s true.
Q. Don’t we attempt to communicate with each other in order to share information, opinions and feelings?
A. Of course, that goes without saying.
Q. So reading and understanding people’s emotions are an important way of communicating, right?
A. Spot on.
Q. So, is it not by listening to the tone of a person’s voice and observing the change in facial expressions that we understand and empathise with others?
A. I always thought you could tell a lot by a man’s eyes 🙂
Q. Final question. Pay attention. What do you think these photos are telling you?
A. I’M LISTENING. GIVE ME SOME FEEDBACK HERE! THERE IS SOMETHING TERRIBLY WRONG GOING ON!!
Note to Gina: In future I will not text, read texts, take calls or make calls in the presence of friends, acquaintances, neighbours or family members. The above also applies to shopkeepers, professionals and to public servants while waiting in queues.
Hand on heart. From this day forward I will make every attempt to restrict the use of my mobile phone to the privacy of my own home.