I had spent the day with friends, enjoying their company and the great city of San Diego. We had spent several hours together, but at the end of the day I felt rather disconnected from them, at least given the amount of time I had just spent with them.
I replayed the day in my head, going over activities and conversations, but couldn’t come up with anything that would make me want to distance myself. Then I realized, I had taken many, many opportunities to glue my eyes to my phone, and not on the human beings in front of me. Rather than entering in to the conversations and relationships that day, I was concerned with opinions of those who weren’t even in my presence. I was a ghost to the people in my immediate vicinity, and might as well have stayed home to live in the world of me.
Social media can a beautiful thing, but to be honest, I don’t have very much willpower when it comes to this topic. I become way too obsessed with the number of times someone clicks a button to approve of the pieces of my life, and can be sucked into the online world faster than I would like. To be honest, I am an approvaholic.
John Mayer acknowledged this about himself, and I appreciate the honesty with which he speaks of himself.
This isn’t just seen in my social media life, but can be witnessed in my job, friendships, and even marriage. But none of those things can hold sway over my heart like Instagram or Facebook does. The instant gratification of a liked picture or comment on my status causes my existence to skyrocket with worth. Which is funny, because while this reaction is disproportionate to the cause, so is my reaction to the life giving friendships around me, and the moments they fill my life with richness and joy. My heart isn’t filled by the things it should be: good conversation, shared life, honest friendship, shared moments of pain and joy.
So I’m pausing from social media for a bit. I love how it encourages me to interact with those I love in different parts of the world, but I don’t love how even those interactions can become about me, along with the rest of my online existence. I don’t know if anyone else feels this way. Do you? It seems like everyone around me is perfectly balanced in their online world and isn’t as dependent on the highs or hit by the lows of approval like I am. But I am, and I have a feeling leaders aren’t dependent on instant approval.
Let me know your thoughts. Feel free to write a comment, but I’d love to grab coffee instead and interact with you. Seems like that would be better for our souls.