By Contributor Kim Saunders (@captainco.tasmania)
Social Media. I love it. But I also loathe it.
It fills my day with awesome. It makes my heart happy. It inspires me. It excites me.
But... It. Does. My. Head. In.
The Likes. Photos. Doubt. Edit. Edit again. Delete. Argh. Shit. Stalk. Pressure. Panic. Who followed me. Who unfollowed me. Why. Sah cray cray.
It's a little like this sometimes ...
How many Likes have I got? How many will I get? Hey, why haven't I got many Likes? Hmmm. Do people not like my photo? Not like my product? What's wrong with my photo. It's a good photo. Isn't it? Maybe it's not a good photo. Maybe I should delete the photo. But hang on. Such and such got heeeaps of Likes for their photo. Mine's better. Isn't it? Hmmm. Maybe it isn't. Oh shit shit. Is it the comment? Did they get the comment all wrong? Did they take offence? Oh god. Is it too similar to such and such's post? Oh no. Do people think I've copied? Shit shit. I better delete it. Bugger. Damn it. I'll delete it. Delete.
Five seconds later. Hmmm. Maybe I shouldn't have deleted it. Should I repost? Maybe. Hang on. Should I take a new photo? Yeah. New photo. Let's go spend another hour setting up another photo and write a new blurb. Yeah.
And hour later. This new set up sucks. I'll just repost the original photo. Damn it. I'm tired. And hungry. Where did two hours just go? Sigh.
I'll admit... I spend far too much time on Instagram. Like, waaaaay too much time. Checking. Posting. Stalking. Thinking.
My poor girls. My poor husband. Always. On. My. Phone. So much so... I think I have Insta-scroll-too-much-RSI. No joke.
The other day I realised I was thinking in squares. I photograph my life in squares. I think in paragraphs. And hashtags. Oops.
Mini turned Two. The night before her party... as usual, I was thinking in squares. What photos I could take. What photos I could 'set up'. What photos I could share. What photos would get likes. What photos I could I take to show off her decorations. Her outfit. Her.
Boom. It hit me. Shame on me. Mini's birthday should not be about that. Not. At. All. Ever. It should be a time for family and friends. A day about Mini. A day to be in the moment. Not little squares. So guess what.... I went cold turkey. I took no photos. Not even of the cake. My oh-so fabulous Women's Weekly Bunny I-almost-had-a-meltdown-over-it-yet-it-turned-out-perfectly Cake. Brutal. But I had to make sure I enjoyed the party. I enjoyed rushing around like a blue-arse-fly. I enjoyed my party guests. I enjoyed the cake. And most importantly... I enjoyed my little girl turning Two.
You know what. It was totally awesome. All day, I had no idea where my phone was. I knew exactly where Mini was. Skipping, smiling, opening presents with squeals of delight and eating far too much sugar. I didn't once think... Hmmm I wonder how many likes I've got. I better check. Nope. I ate cake. Far too much cake. I mingled. I chatted. I laughed. I cuddled my little ladies. I hung out with my husband. Loved it.
Don't get me wrong. I'm not hating on Social Media. I've met some Ah-MAZING people I'm lucky to call friends. I've been inspired. I've laughed. I've loved. I've liked. It's made my business grow. It's made me grow. So many opportunities. So much support. So many new lifelong friendships.
But. I'm annoyed at how much time I do spend on Social Media. How swept up in it I've become. It's also shown me a nasty side of people. Some days... it's messed with my emotions. It's messed with my mind. It's messed with my mojo. It's crushed my self esteem. It's stomped on my a-little-too-sensitive heart. It's made me cry. Want to give up. Want to hide.
So... Twenty Sixteen. I'm all about balance. I need to find a happy medium between online life... and real life. I need to be in the moment more. The real moments. With my girls. My hubby. Even just with myself.
A GREAT Insta friend told me she was staging a one woman protest about living in the moment more. I'm with her. I told her it's now a two woman protest. Well, technically not a protest... just a bit of a personal stand.
I'm not making any bold statements about logging off. Having tech-free days. Insta-free weeks. Or when I log on. And for how long.
But I am going to try and be less attached... emotionally and physically. I'm going to dial it back a little. For my own sanity.
The advertising-marketing-designer-photographer in me understands the importance of social media…
The small business owner in me understands the importance of being inspired, in touch and up-to-date…
The Tasmania-living-mainlander understands the importance of not feeling alone and isolated…
The Mumma in me understands the importance of friendships and support...
I'll always be onboard and online. I'll always stalk. support, shop and shout out.
But not all day erryday. Like in the hand-cramp-I've-been-scrolling-far-too-much-is-that-arthritis-or-RSI kinda way.
And. Thank goodness I don't Pin-Tweet-or-Facebook. Yet. Phew.