Life Without Social Media . . .
[I got this note from Adrian Chan recently and I asked his permission to share it on SVW. I'm a big proponent of "turning offline," it is the only antidote to ADD and it helps me think and get some work done. I spend large blocks of time every day not checking email, facebook, twitter, sms, voicemail, etc.
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Ad hoc greetings to you all, and a happy new year!
I want to apologize for missing out on communication for the past couple wks. I did something I havent done since the new millenium -- I was off the computer for 2 wks. Well, with a couple teeny tiny exceptions to download email and use google maps. I turned off my phone, hauled out a couple dozen books of philosophy and theory, and sat down for a good old-fashioned reading vacation at home.
I can tell you, it was interesting. It took a day to forget about twitter. Two days to forget about facebook. Three days to forget about Cnn.com. At three days one's ability to read without distraction really picks up, and by the end of the first wk I could sit without moving for several hours, and read 50 plus pages easily without so much as getting up to stretch.
Constant and daily use of tools like twitter definitely has consequences for the mind! I'm communication sensitive, meaning that as soon as I see a message, I begin to answer or respond or comment on it, in my mind, and so being offline was a real treat. Eliminating the phone seals the experience -- it's strange how aware one is of the possibility that somebody may call, and even turning off the phone didn't get rid of that entirely. But I'm not joking that by the end of the 2 wks I was pretty ambivalent about turning everything back on again... We're not aware of what social media do until we take them away.
On that note, I'm back now and looking forward to a productive -- and hopefully inspiring -- year with you all!
Adrian Chan's blog:
A Social Interaction Design (SxD) blog on Web 2.0 and Social Media
Maladies of Internet 2.0: Conversation Overload is Worse than Information Overload