I'm standing in line at the grocery store and I mindlessly pull my phone out and start scrolling through Twitter. I'm sitting in a meeting and I'm bored. Without thinking, I pick up my phone and look at pictures on Instagram. I'm at lunch. Instead of engaging in conversation, I look through Facebook and post an update.
What is wrong with this picture?
Some might think there's absolutely nothing wrong with the above scenarios, and that's cool. Then this post is not for you and you can stop reading at this point.
But if you read each one and thought to yourself somewhat sighing, "Yes, that's me," then this is for you. And you aren't satisfied with the way you are using social media.
We live in a world where we are connected to our phones, but the problem is that we aren't intentional about it. Think about the social media you use. Why are you using it? How much of your day is spent using it?
I'm just as guilty as the next person when it comes to the mindless scrolling and checking. There are times when I'm very intentional about its use, but then there are those other times when it's more like a reflex. I'm not thinking about it and then suddenly I look down and I've grabbed my phone.
So, I'm challenging myself. I'm not going to delete social media from my phone, but I'm going to look for alternatives instead of making it the first thing I gravitate to.
When I'm in line at the grocery store, I will leave my phone in my purse. When I'm in a meeting or at lunch, I will leave my phone in my office. And, I will put together a list of alternative activities to do instead when I'm feeling that twitch to grab my phone. Here are some ideas:
1. Go for a walk.
2. Read a book or magazine.
3. Write a note to a friend or family member.
4. Complete a chore -- dishes, laundry, mow the lawn, clear out the dishwasher, etc.
5. Make a care package for a friend.
6. Take a drive.
7. Visit a loved one.
8. Pick an area of the house to unclutter.
9. Plan meals for the next few days.
10. Make a grocery list or to-do list.
11. Sit outside and just enjoy the sounds of nature.
12. Go for a bicycle ride.
13. Reorganize kitchen cabinets or another area of the house.
14. Go through clothes.
15. Work outside in a garden or plant flowers.
Whatever you put on your list, make it fit your personality and what you enjoy doing or need to do around your living space. Put the list in a highly visible spot so that you have it nearby when you encounter those times your fingers start to twitch and you move toward your phone without intention.
Social media can be useful, but it can also be a detriment to how time is spent. Make sure the use is intentional instead of mindless.
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.