Growing up around technology has had a real effect on my ability to cope without my laptop or mobile phone next to me. It’s very tragic.
If it’s not social media, then it’s the internet for Netflix or Sky Go. My life is full of technology and now I work for a social media company which basically means I’m never off it. – This might sound like a dream for many millennials who are constantly glued to Twitter and Insta but it can make you start to hate it.
With blogging and my other side projects, social media itself has become a big part of my life and in turn has become a bit too constraining. You feel the need to Tweet when you have nothing to say. To post on Instagram everyday. Even to blog when you don’t know what to write. This is why I’ve started switching off now more than ever.
There used to be a time where I couldn’t sit through a whole film without checking my phone at least once. I couldn’t leave those red notification dots on my phone for longer than a few minutes. It was all so instant and I had to respond to everything right that second, rather than ignoring it.
It’s so easy to just sit on your phone or laptop all night. To document everything you do through Instagram stories. To share your every thought on Twitter. But this isn’t what life should be about. It should be able updating your profile picture every month or seeing how many likes you can get.
When you actually put your phone down you actually start to see more than you did before. You notice little things like what time the grass gets cut every week to how your coffee at Starbucks is actually made.
Although you might not think it, switching off is probably one of the most important things for bloggers. It can give you that time and head space to think about things. You’ll notice new things and come up with different ideas for content. You’ll see things differently and find creativity in it.
Some of my best ideas have come from just sitting and thinking on my commute home, rather than glued to my phone. My best memories have come from times where there wasn’t a laptop in sight.
We’re so obsessed with how something will look on Instagram, or what to tweet next that we miss the funny overhead conversations on the train. Or that cute little corner of a cafe which would actually complement your feed.
I’ve found new places in Manchester from just walking around rather than going on TripAdvisor. I’ve made memories that haven’t been documented on social media – and those are the best ones because it’s special and the whole world doesn’t know about it.
Social media for me and blogging was becoming a bit dormant. But switching it off, going away from it for a while and experiencing life without it is the reason why I’m still using it now. Taking break will make you appreciate it so much more than you already do. Either because you’ll miss it like crazy, or you’ll have a bit of a Eureka moment and a spark of creativity for it.
Technology is great and it has really helped to skyrocket some people’s lives, opening up new opportunities and adventures. But we need to go back to basics sometimes and pretend it’s not there.
You’ll be surprised what you’ll experience without it – and you can always blog about it later on.
© Emmi Bowles