I’ve decided to conduct an experiment this summer. I’m disconnecting (or attempting to) from social media and deleting many of my apps and seeing just what kind, if any, of a difference that makes in my mental health and productivity.
I love Twitter. I’ve met so many awesome people on there, and for me, it’s mostly a positive place. I’ve been very lucky not to have any hate slung my way. But I find that lately, it has become a very negative place for some, and that bleeds into my timeline, even if I don’t want it to. This is not the only, or really the main, reason I am taking a break. I find that I check Twitter or Instagram or play a quick game of Candy Crush almost mindlessly. (Deleting that app was physically painful. I had made it to like level 450-something.) I pick up my phone without even realizing I’m doing it.
I worry that going dark will be bad for my writing career. People may forget me when my face isn’t in their feed daily. But I also know this is an unfounded worry, because the worst thing for my writing career is being distracted from writing. It’s not just (or even mainly) my writing time that is affected by distraction. I am pretty good about carving out time to work and staying focused. But it is those quiet moments when I’m not working, when my brain is free to wander, that some of my best ideas or lines find their way to me, and that can’t happen when I am constantly tuning those ideas out in favor of social media or games.
I worry the most about being absent because I won’t be there to support the writing community. I am on Twitter mainly for those connections, those conversations and pep rallies. I will miss out on awesome book recs, deal announcements, and cover reveals. The writing community has been so very supportive of me, and I want to be the same in kind. I hope I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings for bowing out for a bit.
Of course, I may flatter myself. You may not even notice I’m gone. J
But I want to reconnect with myself. My focus for this year is to “Be Present,” and right now, I’m not doing so well. I want to recover those lost moments and lost experiences. Maybe I will. Maybe I won’t. I may fail miserably and crawl back, hollow-eyed and in need of a fix, before the week is out. I may find that too much disconnect only makes me lonely. Like I said, this is just an experiment.
I’ll keep you posted.