In late November of 2022, I took all social media apps off my phone.
Listen as I read you this blog post :)
Immediately after I removed them, I would find myself grabbing my phone scrolling the screen twice to the right, where I had placed the apps.
With the intention to limit my social media and phone use, I had moved the apps thinking that this was going to help me use them less, but that wasn't the case at all.
At one time, I even had placed them in a folder where it took more effort to find them, and that didn't work either.
I knew it was time to take them off altogether.
It was profound.
I witnessed myself constantly picking up the phone and moving my hand in such a way to get to the apps, just like a robot.
It took maybe a week or two for this habit to disappear.
At first, I was quite perplexed as I consider myself pretty "aware".
I knew that I had taken the apps off my phone, but my brain was trained to reach for them, especially in times where I needed to numb, not feel what was bubbling up, when was bored, or was looking for that quick dose of dopamine.
Of course, the likes and comments on my posts would deliver me the expected dose and I realized I was addicted to that dose.
Every time my finger got to where the app was with nothing to enter into, I felt sick about how unaware and unconscious I had been for who knows how long.
It was when I realized of how much time I spent on my phone, at one point 5-6 hours a day, I knew I was addicted.
What a waste of time.
It's so easy to go and "check" something and then half an hour has vanished.
I also saw my kids seeing me on my phone.
This made the pit in my stomach gurgle with shame.
Since I've discovered the truth, within me, that if I want my kids to be or act in a certain way, the only way to create that shift, is to embody what it is I'm asking them to be.
In the depths of my heart, I do not want my kids to be addicted to their phones or screens. Period.
Science is proving to us that social media and screen use is a major contributor to mental illness.
After this experiment, I can see it's truth.
It causes major anxiety, depression, and the state of living in constant fear.
I also began to notice, before I removed the social media apps, how I never felt great, after a scrolling session.
I would notice a subtle uneasy feeling in my body, almost like the feeling of insecurity, comparison, and that deep-rooted belief that I'm just not enough.
Sometimes when I got a like or a comment, it felt great. A quick and instant form of validation would quickly appear and then vanish just as fast.
I'm sharing this with you because the last couple months have been amazing.
I've never felt better. My nervous system is calmer, my mind is clearer, and I find myself so much more present.
More present in my life, with my kids, and in my body.
I do believe that because I have been consistent in cultivating stillness in my life, that this choice was so obvious.
My time in meditation and being in the space between my thoughts has increased my vibration so much so that it just no longer resonates with social media.
Social media is noisy, chaotic, and always giving us the reflection that we are and will never be enough.
People's lives look perfect and it's complete bullshit.
I too have played this game... I've filtered my photos to cover up the constellations of freckles on my face. I've shared information that I think people need to be healthier, but what the fuck do I know about what anyone really needs to be healthier?
I've posted photos of my happy family unit rather than photos that embody the truth of how messy my life actually is.
What I believe social media has showed me is that no information, video, or post will ever give me what I need to feel the way I want to feel.
Yet that's all we are looking for.
We are looking for validation and information to make us feel better about ourselves, when in truth nothing can ever do that for us.
This sense of wholeness can only and will only be cultivated within ourselves.
There are many great things that social media brings us, but in reality it's a whole world that doesn't actually exist.
It's snapshots of moments in people lives that they want you to see.
So much information on how to look, be, eat, live, what to buy so that you can finally feel like you are enough.
Just to be clear, I'm not implying that I'm "better" than anyone that loves or uses social media.
This is not my message at all.
For some people, it's their lifeline, income, business, and brand.
My message is that when we mindlessly use something to feel a certain way, it will never ever give us what we think it will.
It only keeps us in the longing and searching for it.
A few weeks ago, I decided that I would reengage with my Hippie Mom community on Facebook.
Honestly, I had missed engaging with our community, but my mental health is more important than anything.
So, I set dedicated times to spend on it during the week and when my kids aren't home.
Not to scroll or to stalk, just to be present with the questions and matters that they have and to offer whatever I can to help.
This time is limited and I make sure that this community is not easily accessible.
I've noticed that when I come on to engage or post, I'm present with it.
I'm not scrolling or flipping from post to post, I'm being guided on what to do.
Then, when I'm done, the tab that holds the access closes and I won't be there again until the next specified time that I've decided serves me.
Removing social apps on my phone has opened up so much freedom in my life.
I no longer wait in lines or at red lights staring onto my phone.
In conversation, the ding or bing of my phone cannot lure me in, while life is speaking to me.
When I'm sitting with someone who prefers the dose of dopamine, rather than my presence, I understand and feel compassion as I too was once entangled in the illusion that social media offers.
As I see family's sitting at the dinner table all engaged on an electronic devices, my heart aches just a little knowing that the sacred moments that we get to share with sacred souls will never be here again.
There are few times when I see someone at a restaurant, alone, present, and not attuned to technology that I have hope that more people are coming back to reality.
You know if you are addicted to your phone.
It's obvious as the lure of it's power and the need to fill the void becomes insatiable. Just look at how much time you spend in these manufactured and unnatural spaces for the mind to dwell in.
Notice how your body feels when do put your phone down.
Do you feel filled up or like more is missing?
It's our simple awareness and willingness to spend time in the void and space between our thoughts that show us the truth.
It's remembering to remember that the most important thing in our lives are the moments strung together that create them.
Personally, I'm tired of missing out on life.
No matter how boring, unbearable, or intolerant life can be... I don't want to miss it.
I don't want to miss a smile on my children's face, an elderly person driving too slow, my puppy begging me to throw the freaking ball again, or the voice of someone I love sharing their life experience with me.
I want it all.
In deep gratitude for you and this community,
The Hippie Moms, LLC
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