Notes from a Floating Life Thoughts about productivity, digital living, and leading a simpler life

Social Media Isn't Your Life

Social media apps on a smartphone

It’s easy to get caught up in social media. There’s a certain enchantment to posting to Twitter or Facebook or Instagram, or checking out what others are doing there.

It’s easy to succumb to the urge to continuously log your life. To post tweets and photos and updates of where you are, of what you’re doing, of who you’re with, of what you’re eating.

It’s equally addictive to immerse yourself in the social media postings of others. It’s fun to imagine being there with those posters, doing what they’re doing.

None of that is your life.

Life isn’t about tweeting or snapping or posting the minutiae of your existence or travels. Life isn’t living vicariously through the lives of others. You aren’t getting same experiences as they are. Not even close. Being there and doing things is very different from looking at photos or videos or tweets. The latter isn’t even the next best thing.

Life is about your own experiences. It’s about filtering the world through your eyes, through your brain. It’s about enjoying the moment and experiencing not just what that moment has to offer but also who you’re with during that moment.

Stopping to post or tweet or check in disrupts the flow of that moment. It’s like a portion of a film skipping on a projector.

There’s nothing wrong with taking a photo or making a note for future reference. But you shouldn’t let that become the main thing you do. You shouldn’t worry about the memories. Focus on the now. Focus on where you are, who you’re with, what you’re doing, what you’re feeling. The memories will follow.

Your experiences won’t be heightened or made richer by the number of shares or likes or hearts you get online.

Next time you’re doing something and feel the urge to whip out your phone to record that moment, pause and ask yourself Do I really need to? Chances are you don’t.

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