After many months of consideration and internal debate, I have deleted most of my personal social media accounts. There are several reasons for this, the primary of which is that I find that they are not conducive to my overall spiritual and mental health.
I got my first account back in 1999, long before social media was the thing. First it was Six Degrees, followed by Myspace, and Facebook and Twitter, then Instagram and Snapchat. Now, there are dozens of social media services, networks and platforms, all with varying approaches to levels of interactions, freedom of speech and privacy, and I've had an account on most of them. However, the overarching theme is connecting people in ways that are meaningful to them, and in the best case, this can be a wonderful thing.
Unfortunately, social media also provides a means to simulate meaningful social interactions without making real connections. It gives those who wouldn't have or maintain a real-life connection the feeling of being connected but without true friendship. It allows those who most need a social life to pretend that all is well while further isolating themselves.
Furthermore, social media enables those who play duplicitous games to prey upon others who are weak or otherwise disadvantaged. It feeds into the psychopathy of the sociopath and narcissist who use it to manipulate and gaslight their targets, giving them far more effective tools to turn unsuspecting mutual friends into their "flying monkeys" as these otherwise well meaning persons reach out in genuine concern, completely unaware that they are being played for the fool. It expands the bad actors' means of access to play spiritual and social games in which they torment those whom they have selected for destruction for whatever reasons that their sick minds have conjured.
There are several people from my past who, in my saner moments, I know need to stay there. It's long past time to move on with my life, remembering what good there was while consigning the rest to the dust bin of my personal history. However, just as it has been said of the Internet in general, social media never forgets, and even when we take the steps to limit and restrict certain memories from coming up in our feeds, various commitments can compel one to keep around people who really just need to be gone from their life.
Thus I've finally pulled the plug. I'm done. This wasn't an easy decision: I've had my Facebook account since the platform was opened to the general public. There's a lot that I will miss—for a while, at least—as I detox from the addiction. I'm not saying that I'll never create another personal social media account again, but it won't be anytime soon.
To those of you whom I have met only online and would like to remain in contact, this blog isn't going anywhere and you'll be able to find me here. If you know me in real life, feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions.
To social media in general, so long, and thanks for all the fish.