Leaving Social Media

Last week, I decided to get off social media for a few months. This was preceded by a gradual decrease in the amount of time I spent on these apps over a three-week time interval.

It all started with a panic attack towards the end of December 2022. On researching the attack and processing the events leading up to it, my frequent use of social media was clearly at the root of this problem.

Prior to this, social media was not an issue for me-I was a passive consumer. Never actively engaging with people, I used it to keep up with current events and feed my interests. Until, I encountered discord.

Discord is addictive because of how quickly you connect with people on voice chats, the smooth interface, seamless integration with gif sites like tenor, the ability to multi-react to a message, threads, consistent availability of features on the web, desktop and mobile apps. Yes, I know the discord mobile app isn’t perfect but have you tried Facebook messenger? It’s akin to going back to the stone age.

People who frequent discord servers seem to struggle to regulate their discord use. They would leave servers and re-join them in a week or so, never being able to stick to their decision to leave. Discord seems to be a place where time stands still-a place people frequent to hit pause on their real lives. I find this observation to be true in myself.

Nothing is worth sacrificing my long-term goals for-be it connecting with people, ‘having fun’ or learning about interesting things. Personal fulfillment is a non-negotiable for me.

Two things: Thing one-most people on discord seem to be addicted to it and using this addiction to stall things that need to be done IRL. Thing two-IRL connections with people > online connections in terms of satisfying our social needs as a species.

I do value the connections I made on discord but choose to reject the app. Taking a break off media for a few months should help me make better decisions on how to integrate social media into my life, if at all.