I’m addicted to social media.

Now I know you are waiting for some witty sarcastic commentary to follow, but I am dead serious.  I’m pretty sure I could use the extra time I spend in my day checking the red, orange, pink notifications to get the insta rush that someone liked, loved, reacted to, one of my incredibly philosophic posts. 😉

It’s a problem.

I have a book list that’s growing at an exponential rate.  Why?  I’ve rewired my brain.  It responds to social media in short bursts to questionably accurate information.  My attention span has decreased to the point where I find myself slightly panicked, correction, extremely agitated, in moments where I’m not quite sure where I set my phone down.

What the hell has happened to me?

I’ve become socially conditioned to join the masses that communicate almost exclusively through text, tweets, Facebook posts, swipe rights, and really, this list of social media platforms goes on forever in all facets and applications of life.  We have become desensitized.  It takes such little effort to throw out the generic ‘haha’, ‘lol’, ‘sup’, and literally endless lazy bullshit acronyms, emojis, and contractions that we’ve created that have dummied us down to the point where it’s almost impossible to discern any inflection of genuine intent.

It doesn’t feel good.  It robs us of genuine meaningful relationships. It suffocates creativity.  It’s made us numb.

This is not who I am.  It’s not what I came here to do.

Let me be clear.  Social media, when not abused, has elevated us in positive ways.  We can keep in touch with people close to our heart.  It’s an AMAZING marketing tool.  It allows us to share our lives with others and connect with people we would not otherwise even know existed.  But let it end there.  Understand that beyond the surface applications, we need to be mindful to create a life beyond the screens with real living, breathing, human beings.  This is how we evolve.  This is where we truly grow.

Now I know that this blog is somewhat disconnected and rough, but that’s the point.  I don’t want to spend any more time this weekend staring at a screen, wondering how everyone beyond it will react to my words, their structure, the imperfections of the overall blog.  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is that I’m going to spend the rest of my weekend with people I love, reading books, rewiring my brain to rise up out of this mediocrity I’ve accepted as my norm.

So my challenge for you is this:

Turn off your phone when meeting with friends.  There is nothing that important that we need to respond in real time that is more important than your tribe.  Respect that with every ounce of your being.

Turn off push notifications on your ‘smart’ phone.  Be present.  Get that same rush from having an actual conversation with someone that feeds your soul.

Finally, promise me you will stop robbing the world of the real you.  Get out from behind that screen and show the world that beautiful mess of chaos that is you.  Life is short.  I want to see you live it.

So much love for all of you…

Roberta J Gizen

BHK, CPT, PN1