Tips for those social media breaks

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Working in the area of social and creative media of course has it’s ups and downs, like any other career path you choose to take, but for me I wouldn’t change it for the world.

As Steve Jobs said himself,

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I know working in this world, having this blog as well as my jammed packed instagram/twitter accounts puts me in the position to share everything with the world and get easily addicted.

But I genuinely take more social media breaks or ‘Airplane Mode Days’ than people think, and they usually go like this:

 

Interruption-free space is sacred. Yet, in the digital era we live in, we are losing hold of the few sacred spaces that remain untouched by email, the internet, people, and other forms of distraction.

Even if you don’t emerse yourself into the world of social media, ‘Airplane Days’ are essential for everyone’s life balance and ‘creative pause’ – whatever your vice is.

Deemed ‘On Airplane Mode’ as I switch off all signal, notifications and data and solely use my phone as a camera or Ipod.

Even if it’s just while I’m in the shower, on a coffee date with a friend or away for the weekend. (When in Germany last year, I turned myself on ‘Airplane Mode’ from Friday to Monday, no problem – refreshing).

Below are just some things I’ve learned along the way – and continue to learn:

Without further ado, introducing life hack 101 with Anna;

The pause: Addictions are something we often do automatically, without thinking. Start to break this chain of trigger-habit auto-response by introducing a small pause in between them. When you get the urge to check something you’re addicted to, notice this urge, and pause for just one second. During this pause, simply ask yourself, “Do I really want to do this, and why?” You can then go on to do it, no matter what the answer, but the important thing is having at least the briefest pause.

Unplugging: Wether you reserve one day of the weekend and force yourself to disconnect, or just by simply turning off your notifications for a few hours, find something within your set means and unplug. Simple little things I do are:

  • Leaving my phone in my room for a few hours after work.
  • Make friends with silent mode.
  • When out with friends, leave your phones in the middle of the table; first to check theirs buys everyone food/drink. (We even did this on New Years Eve!)
  • Place your phone face-down. Might sound stupid but it works.
  • Deliberately ‘forget your phone’.
  • Of course my friend, Airplane Mode.

Schedule time for non-Internet and non-media activities. That means actually block them off on your schedule. Take a walk for 10 minutes. Do some yoga, or what I prefer to do is write in a notebook, remember writing? Talk to someone in person. Schedule time to spend with the favourites. Go for a walk in solitude.

Cold turkey weekends: It’s just like ripping off a ban-aid, just go for it. I promise you, you’ll feel amazing after it.

The goal isn’t to eliminate all information sources and be shut off from the online world. It’s not to throw out your iPhone or laptop. These tools are incredibly useful and powerful — obviously I make my living using them, and they have changed our lives in so many positive ways. The idea is simply not to be controlled by them, and to have a balanced life that includes other activities. It’s possible to stay in contact with Friends abroad, beat your top score on Candy Crush (if that’s what your into) and also be present in life’s unforgettable moments. 

As much as I love the world of social media, you can’t translate the phone calls, the sweet messages, the life chats, the hugs, the advice, the good deed’s or even the drinks but what social media does do is help you remember them.

Don’t forget every time you post something online you have a choice.

 

Be kind to it this world, don’t abuse it.

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