I’ve recently noticed myself opening Social Media feeds more and more; like a nervous tick, an automatic reaction to … being left alone for more than 5 seconds \ a need to be distracted at work \ standing in line (even if that line is 2 people long – including me). It’s become like a ‘No More Gaps’ for my attention, or an addiction to short bites of media, opinion or sensation. I’ve drawn it in caps (SM) because it feels like that’s what its become – Capital. A place to live, rather than a tool to use, a demand rather than a choice … (Is this The Matrix?). Maybe I’m pitching this too high; or maybe not.
But SM has become a place for being distracted, or getting lost in unhelpful or negative threads. I’ve reacted to news bites or people’s responses to stories – even though I know that they don’t represent the full story. I’ve also become increasingly negative or saddened by the stories I’ve read. The Pell / Trump / Morrison cycle has not helped, as I’ve found myself drawn into stories that perpetuate that negativity, or distress.
Ash Wednesday – the beginning of Lent – is my opportunity to reset. I’m dropping off Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) until Easter Monday. I’ve wanted to do this since the Cambridge Analytica saga 12 months ago (yes, it was ONLY that long ago). It’s a reset that I’ve increasingly felt is necessary for my soul.
I know I’ll miss some connecting moments with the running community, and witty tweets from friends and colleagues. I’ll miss the inspirational stories of fire-fighters and neighbours battling this current round of bush fires.
I’m curious to see what will replace this nervous twitch – and what others will notice. I hope I’ll be more attentive to the world around me, to people whom I care about and to God.
So I’ve taken the Red Pill, put down the No More Gaps, and deleted the apps from my phones and iPad … lets see where the Rabbit Hole leads, and what the cracks reveal.