Entertainment

21 Days Without Social Media

By Elise Siebert

We don’t want to admit it, but we are addicted to our phones.

Social media fills all the gaps throughout my day. I found myself going straight to Instagram and Snapchat instead of getting work done— it became a bad habit. Apple now has a feature that informs users how much screen time is used, I was spending around four hours per day on social networking. That’s four hours that I could be doing something more productive.

Everyone at church was challenged to go on a fast to start the year off with strong faith and a fresh start, I chose to go on a detox from social media for 21 days because I easily get caught up in my ‘technology profile.’

I want to see a difference during this fast. With the extra hours during the day, I plan on strengthening my faith and allowing the Lord to speak to me— and I will actually have the time to listen. I hope that I will stop procrastinating as much with my school work. I also want to focus on improving my human relationships, not my online relationships.

Day 1

To start my fast, I first had to establish what I wanted to achieve and how I was going to do it. I deleted all of my social media apps to avoid temptation, and I have been informing my peers.

Waking up this morning, I naturally went straight to my phone to check Instagram. I quickly remembered my fast and decided to do a devotional instead to start the day off right.

Usually, when I get to school I sit in my car on my phone until it is time for class, but today I was more productive and read a part of my book for my English class. I left feeling like I had actually accomplished something.

Throughout the day, it became easier and easier to stay off social media.

It wasn’t until the end of the day when I had nothing else to do. Instead of sitting on my phone scrolling through Instagram, I went downstairs and talked to my parents for a while.

There was a lot of temptation throughout the day, but so far I have stuck to my fast.

Day 2&3

The next couple days have had ups and downs. A part of me really misses social media; I realized social media is a comfort thing. Naturally, when I start to feel uncomfortable, I would go to my phone so it gives off the effect that I am doing something. Without social media, there is really no reason to be on my phone for a long period of time, so as a result, I am forced to talk to the people around me— which is actually a positive thing.

I have also been getting more work done for my classes. Getting things done ahead of time takes away some of the stress that I usually have throughout the week. It feels like some weight has been lifted off my back.

I have also been having good conversations with my boyfriend, he is doing a social media fast as well and because of this we do not have our phones as a distraction when we are together.

 Day 4

Today has been the easiest day so far, I am starting to focus more on my goal— to gain wisdom through the Lord. I woke up stressed and anxious about a test that I had during the day but instead of heading straight to my phone (my usual routine), I found myself in prayer. I asked for peace and for a better perspective. Though I was still overwhelmed, I felt calmer after taking time to breathe. Also, people around me know that I have been doing this fast and some have even been inspired to do one themselves.

Day 5

Today has been a bit of a game changer. I have been focusing a lot on prayer and for the Lord to give me wisdom. I hung out with a close friend last night and I came to a realization that I had been distancing myself from my friend group. Distancing myself wasn’t particularly bad, because I needed to take a step back to breathe. But the Lord brought it to my attention that I need to start investing in more friendships again.

Day 6&7

It has been the first weekend without social media. I noticed that I spent more time with my family and I set more time aside for a longer devotional. I continue to speak to the Lord more and it is honestly very encouraging.

I seem to be focusing less on my phone altogether. I don’t feel obligated to always be on it. Also, I haven’t been comparing myself to others as much, which I used to do a lot on Instagram. I have been feeling happier in my own skin.

Day 8

Tonight was a girls night out. Parts of the night, all the girls would be on their phones for a short period of time. I wasn’t able to escape to my phone so I was forced to be in a little bit of an awkward situation. During dinner though, I didn’t have my phone as a distraction, and I had a lot of really good conversations. I feel like I have gotten closer to a couple of my friends.

Day 9&10

I haven’t learned much today, I have been too distracted with school and work. I got all my things done quickly because I am learning not to procrastinate.

Throughout this fast, I have been asking God to give me opportunities to invite people to church and to talk about him. I have actually been noticing these discussions have been coming up more.

So far, I have already learned a lot about myself and my relationship with the Lord. I am excited to see how this fast will turn out in the end.

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