This post may be more directed at bloggers, but at this day and age it could be a good read to the average smartphone user. With so many social media platforms, and people like Blonde on a Budget telling us it’s better to disconnect, where do we draw the line?
I spent the day on Saturday in Downtown Toronto at the Spark Sessions fashion and beauty blogger conference, learning about Pinterest, Instagram, Periscope, and more. As I listened to Adrienne M Dyer (a popular “scoper”) talk about Periscope, I was skeptical at first. I thought, my goodness, this is just another excuse to waste and lose time sitting on my phone. But the more I listened and as she answered questions, I realized that in moderation, it could be a huge advantage – just like any social media platform.
So I made myself an account. With an increase in followers, Periscope will surely become a medium of following up on blog posts, eventually doing beauty tutorials, as well as a place where I can follow people that will add value to my own life. Already having Twitter and Instagram for my blog, it is definitely a challenge to keep up with all the platforms.
And that’s the key to it: value. Whether it’s for personal use, for your business, or for your hobby of blogging, figure out which mediums will create the most value for both yourself and your followers. If it’s for business or blogging, make a plan of what to post and when to post on each platform – again, making sure it has a value and is relevant.
Before starting blogging, the only platforms I was on were Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat. Those were the three that I felt had a purpose for me. Facebook is a great place to stay connected, and to reconnect with people I lost touch with, though I don’t scroll through the feed as often as Instagram and Snapchat Stories. Based on the people I follow and the people who follow me, Instagram is the place where I can share bits and pieces of my life – for this reason, my personal profile is private. Same goes for Snapchat – unfiltered pieces of what’s going on around me that I could share with close ones, whether it’s a photo or a 10-second segment. I also already know who’s Stories on Snapchat bring me nothing – people posting selfies, or just video clips of them in their cars listening to music – and I already know not to open up those stories.
Now, having started my blog in August, I’m starting to catch myself spending more and more time on my phone, having created a Twitter and a separate Instagram for that purpose. With more and more social platforms on the rise, I’m worried about not crossing the line, and not living my life through my smartphone. Even though perhaps it would be best for my blog if I were to stay connected everywhere, overall it’s not the solution for me right now. Blogging is not my full-time gig, therefore, being connected on every social platform does not bring me enough value.
One small thing that helps – my push notifications for all social media (except Facebook Messenger) are turned off. This means I only see the notifications and remember about these applications when I intend to. My phone isn’t constantly buzzing, and I can move on with my daily life distraction-free when I need to. Yes, I might miss a post from my favourite fellow blogger, or a hilarious tweet from Norm Kelly, but I can’t let those things run my life. I’m committed to the real relationships in my life, and as much as I am passionate about blogging and staying connected online, I draw the line at letting my phone become a priority over the people around me.
I seldom pick up my phone at the table, unless it is to take a photo for a future post, and I try my best to check in on all my social media platforms when I am alone, or at a point where it won’t offend anyone if I’m not giving them my full attention (ex. study dates).
With full time studying, two jobs, and a blog, there’s only so much that I can fit on my plate at once. This means I have to be picky with what I spend my time on, especially when it comes to social media.
And that’s what I recommend to you. If you feel like social media is taking over your life, take a break from it! Delete the platforms that serve you no purpose. Leave your phone in your bag when you’re with your friends and family. If you don’t run a blog or an online business, get out of the habit of spending your time behind a screen. Create new purpose in your life.
I hope you have reached the bottom of this post because it has brought value to your day.
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Let’s discuss on Periscope! Add me @lifestylebistro