I spend a lot of time online. In fact I rarely watch TV! Instead I spend over an hour each night surfing around the web – jumping from social media site to social media site:
I’m sure there are even more sites that I’ve forgotten!
Recently I looked around my insanely messy house and wondered – are all of these social media sites truly a friend, or a foe?
Am I getting more out of it, than I’m losing? What am I getting out of it? Is it merely a boost to my fragile ego to have all of these “friends” and “followers”? Why do I care about all of the “noise” people are making on the web? To be honest, I’m having a hard time figuring out any true personal benefits of social media. So, like the internet addict that I am, I did a quick, informal Twitter Survey to find out what people think are benefits:
” Twitter Survey – what are the benefits of social networking? And I don’t mean on a marketing level, but on a personal level. ”
mammaloves: @momontherun I have made good IRL friends w/ppl I initially met online. And networks like Twitter serve as one-stop info. source.
edhammerbeck: Social nw: I’m still trying to figure out the value. Ideas from people? Like running advice. I’m not a social guy IRL tho’.
tamsul: @momontherun U get to meet people with similar interests as u that u won’t normally get to meet due to locations.
san_dyego: @momontherun Well having 100 followers sure makes me feel loved!
chaoticchitchat: @momontherun personal entertainment lol
So there ya have it: Friends, camaraderie, information, ego, entertainment etc…
But can’t I get all of that elsewhere? Can’t I just PHONE my friends? Watch the news on TV? Spend time with family? Join clubs, read a book etc… ? You bet! ANd I do – occasionally…
Now, on the other side of the fence, what am I LOSING as a result of my infatuation with social media? That my dear friends, is a lot easier for me to brainstorm. Here’s my list:
- Quality time with my children – in a rush for “me time” and “down time” my hubby and I take turns putting the kids to bed. I wonder, am I really in a rush for “me time” or am I in a rush for computer time?
- A clean organized house – it’s kind of hard to fold laundry and surf the ‘net at the same time. My house is an absolute disaster!
- Health – I bet if I wasn’t so darned addicted to the internet I’d have more time to workout, choose healthier snacks, prepare better meals for my family etc… I could be the fit fabulous mommy I want to be!
- Friends – true, (IRL) in real-life friends, the ones who’ll be there for me in a crisis. I’m ignoring them as a result of my addiction, and I fear the same reason why I don’t call them is the reason why they don’t call me.
Now that I’ve brainstormed the pros and cons of social media, I have to decide which is more important to me, the pros or cons? Truthfully the cons are more important, so I think my new year’s resolution will be to find a better BALANCE between social media and IRL (real-life). If I’m not around as much as I usually am, you’ll know that I’ve doing a better job of spending time with the most important people in my life, my family: