It's Not That Big of a Deal
Yep! I walked away from Social Media on January 1. I'm just writing on Substack now for many of the reasons you list above, and working on becoming even more consistent with it. And in just 9 days, I feel better about myself. I had already stopped posting as much on social media, but now, I'm not scrolling or reading posts that I wish I could unsee. It's been glorious!
Glad you're back to "blogging" Jeff. I followed your old blog for a long time when you were writing about writing and working for a nonprofit. Good to "see" you again.
I understand this on a personal level; but from a marketing perspective, how do you see this affecting your ability to connect with clients/readers? I’m asking out of genuine curiosity because I struggle with this as I’m just working to “build my audience”…
Reason #5 hit home for me. Thanks for sharing these words. It helps me to know I’m not alone!
100% with you. I just don't want to do it anymore. I'm one of those assholes who smoked for 10 years and then one day was like "You know what? I think I'm done with this," and quit. This feels like that.
I've spent the last year or so loosely hoping I'll be able to figure out a way for my next career to not require social media. I still don't know what I'm doing next, but I've mentally moved into the space of "If I have to be on IG in order to do my work, it's not the right work for me." Even if it sounds great on paper, or would be lucrative, or whatever other reason that makes logical sense. Will I make less money? Probably. Will I love my life more? Definitely.
Thanks for writing this!
There are some artists and photographers on Instagram I follow because the work they share is updated and fresh, whereas their websites are static. One can blog without social media, but good luck with discoverability. Substack at least has a built in community. The best bet is to find work that doesn’t depend on a social media presence. YouTube is another time drain, so I try to avoid it in favor of books.
When I sat down to honor the big dream for my life with my ink, I realized that nowhere in my dreams did social media come in to play. I want real friendships with real people doing in real life in person things. Thank you for this article!
Nice! I quit all my socials back in 2020, shortly after the pandemic shut everything down. The hardest part was realizing (after a while) that I didn’t have as many “real” friends as I thought. In fact, I haven’t heard from anyone since then (except a couple people I was connected to already outside of social). So that kind of stings.
But, I also realized it was as much my fault as theirs. I assumed too many connections without putting in real effort. Because social media convinced me we were closer than we actually were. Likes and comments aren’t the same thing as text messages and actual conversations...apparently 😜
Still, I don’t regret it one bit! Life is much quieter, simpler, happier, and more peaceful.
I walked away from social media after posting a picture a day for an entire year. I don't miss it an ounce. I also read the book "Stolen Focus" by Johann Hari and highly recommend it to seal the deal. Great piece. Thank you, Jeff.
The only social media I use actively is Facebook. I don't struggle with many of the things on your list but the use of time. During the Trump years I also had issues with political discussions until I decided to let go of a lot of friends/followers who stirred the pot.
My complaint about all this online writing and marketing activity is different. It's the constant busywork. The logins, the passwords, the emails, it becomes overwhelming. Wordpress, Facebook, Twitter, Bandcamp, SoundCloud, MailChimp, Domain, Flywheel, Amazon and that's just some of the ones related to keeping a website and sharing product. Add all my other personal sites for medical, dental, etc., and my work sites. It's exasperating keeping up with everything.
I remember when I'd only get a handful of emails a day. Now I get dozens everyday, most of which are junk, on several different accounts. I want that to stop. I don't want to spend my retirement years being chained to this thing. I want to write. I want to compose music. I want to share my content with others. But it begins to feel like the efforts are not worth the reward.
By the way, I did start a Substack and published a few articles. I'd really appreciate it if you might follow mine. danstevenerickson
Hi Jeff. I was having coffee with a friend this morning who suggested I go on Instagram to increase my reach for Gentle Creative. A couple of people have said this to me as they like what I do and think I would find a good audience there. I'm not sure but I'm also open to it. Who knows. And I replied to her that I have noticed a big shift away from social media - just as you're doing. Ultimately, I don't think it matters where one is "on it" or not - just whether it serves one, or one serves it!
I’m considering an information diet Jeff and social is a big part of the menu. I write daily on LinkedIn and Twitter, but find myself struggling to keep up with the volumes of nonsense by those that I’m comparing myself to... albeit unintentionally. Good thoughts here.
Social media is addictive because it's designed to be that way. Those companies keep tweaking their AI and algorithms to make us spend a lot of time on them. But the advantage of social media is we can be become instant experts and argue/comment on economy, wars, politics, health, celebrities, movies, and practically any subject under the sun without any formal education or experience :-)
I think that’s the bottom line, the return on social is really non-existent. If “feels” productive at least while growing a brand, but in reality it’s not. Thanks for this thoughtful post. I’m loving the new format.
Still not there yet, but I am starting to recognize how bad social media is and how draining on time and resources it is.
Yes yes yes to all of this. Thanks for your honesty. Inspiring!
“...the juice was no longer worth the squeeze”. I love this line. I intend to use this metaphor as a filter for myself this coming year. Thank you!