Why I took the #SocialSanyaas and what it taught me
We live in the times of content consumption. Never before in the history of human history have human beings been exposed to so much information in such less time.The way humans adapt to new information in today’s time and age of /excessive/ content consumption is a thought to ponder over. I have been having this thought about how we are suddenly becoming so like-minded, to the level at which we are almost predictable and talk about the same things over and over again, social media has made the word ‘Buzz’ a little too easy and anything, absolutely anything can become a trend. The fact is, we are a part of a generation which is going to be written down in history as the first generation which had too much information. So the question that I wanted to ask myself was, ‘How much information is too much information?’ I come from a background of being updated, it was my job to be the first one to know, has always been social media and the content that works in today’s time and age. For me, content consumption was a way of life, it wasn’t just a habit or an addiction. /The only way to find out how addicted I was to social content consumption was to stop this consumption trend for some time./ But I am going to say, I wasn’t expecting the results. So here are my 3 observations about the last one week:
1. Window Shopper
It’s a very human thing to think ‘I am stronger than that and this won’t happen to me’. Well, I was in for a surprise, I always thought I wasn’t addicted to Facebook and when the time comes I will give it up easily. But I never thought the time would come, I mean the whole world is on it, what could possibly go wrong. Isn’t it just another social medium, what is the problem in spending time on it, I always used to justify it to myself as it was a way to *learn more*. But was it? I started to realise on the second day that I used to unlock my phone, scroll through the 5-6 screens (Yes, I have a lot of apps, 75+ to be precise) and not find the ‘f’ button and unlock it again. This happened at least 10 - 15 times, after which I realised what I was doing. I noted this down. this didn’t stop for the rest of 7 days.
There was a constant fear of not knowing. Honestly, I don’t know what I was missing out on, was it the consumption of the ‘what’s happening’ around me or was it the pictures of people I have never spoken to but I’d like to know how their day is being spent. I realized by the second day I did the right thing by doing this. Because by now I had started to find out how nothing was important other than me and my close circles who were in touch with me, without fail.
I am not proud in admitting that in the last week my productivity was up by at least 20% if not more, I don’t know if we realise, but it’s not just the time we spend on Facebook and Twitter and Instagram but also it is interlined to how much content we are consuming which we don’t need. And there is a reason it’s called the web! I was spending a lot more time doing what I love, my job. I had a lot more time to spend with my family, my peers. When I was out with my friends I realised I didn’t check my phone for hours and would automatically be a lot more involved in comparison to what I used to be earlier. In short, there was an automatic task of checking for updates before this week and it wasn’t there anymore. This was undoubtedly the best part of #SocialSanyaas To sum it up, it was a week that made me realise how dependent we are on social media and instant communication and how we as adults are almost like inmates of a system that is providing us too much information and not in the right way. It’s important today to realise that information can take away a lot of you and not just add to your knowledge level. In short, it has helped me understand that there is a need to realise how dependent we are on ‘a medium’ for our happiness. You can take the test too and share your experiences with the hashtag #SocialSanyaas, I know of 4 people who are currently trying this and helping me out with their experiences.