SOCIAL MEDIA: Being Offline…….And What It Taught Me

Hi everyone,

So it’s been a while……..

To those of you that are new to my blog, HELLO 😀 and welcome back to everyone else 😉 To anyone that is new to following me, pop over and you can read a bit more about me HERE.

Firstly I want to explain incase anyone may be unaware of why I hadn’t been online for nearly a month. I came off social media for pretty much the entire month of August. There were rumours about why but it was simply just wanting to take a break away and needing time away from the phone. As I said on Instagram, it isn’t my bread and butter, it’s not my sole income so it was really nice to step away for while. The month away from social media was amazing. I was becoming extremely run down and sick with returning to work full-time, minding Lily, keeping up my social media/blog and having a life. I eventually had an eye infection in both my eyes, a throat infection & got the flu really bad while I was off too. My body was telling me to slow down so thankfully now I have. I was debating about this blog post, I edited it three times as I know how many eyes watch my every move now which is sad but true. One thing I have realised NOW MORE THAN EVER is that not everyone is following me with good intent.

We all know not to believe everything we read on the internet. We all know that there is so much stuff online that is fabricated. I always say in life you’ll not be everyones cup of tea. You will NOT get on with everyone in life whether that’s strangers, in work, with your family or even a friends circle. You’ll click with some people quicker than others and that’s just how life goes. The thing is when you go onto Instagram or Facebook is…….you have a CHOICE. You have a CHOICE between who you want to follow and who you don’t. That is why you can easily unfollow someone as quick as you added them. If someone annoys you that much and you find yourself not liking their posts, rather than keep watching them just UNFOLLOW them.

It’s really hard being watched, judged, and critiqued CONSTANTLY, online, in real life and in my job. Thank god for my thick skin and being the strong person that I am. Having the few weeks off has made me realise so much and made me realise what is actually important to me. I love Instagram but it’s just an app. An app that can go tomorrow. An app that can be deleted in an instant. I took nearly a month off and was it a big deal? No? Did anyone care? No. I got lots of lovely messages saying come back which was nice but I did what was right for me. There are lots of bloggers/influencers who wouldn’t even DREAM of taking that much time away from ‘the app’. Sadly there are some people who care far too much about what other people are doing. It’s weird that people who don’t enjoy watching & don’t follow me, know so much about my life and my every move. I find it really strange that strangers monitor how I mother my child when Lily is the happiest little one year old around. I find it really strange that strangers think they know me after watching a few minutes of Instagram stories for a while yet know so little about me as a person.

In this paragraph below, I am not in any way speaking for everyone, I have HUNDREDS of supportive amazing followers on here but I am talking about Instagram in general.

I thought long and hard about this whole ‘social media online world’ in my time away from here. Instagram is great in so many ways, you share your personal highs of life for everyone to see and significant things to you personally but doing that is actually main problem of why there is so much hate on the app. Constantly comparing your life to someone else. This is the issue. Instagram have created this amazing app for us but now instead of all just doing our own thing & celebrating it, it’s strangers hurling abuse at other strangers because Instagram makes you think that everyone is living ‘the perfect life’ – EXCEPT YOU! Everyone shares the ‘amazing version’ of their life but in reality nobody sees the struggle behind closed doors of anyone. I will put my hand up and say I have done that too, I am also guilty of trying to show the better side of my life online HOWEVER I still keep it very real, showing the bad with the good and staying true to myself.

So what has this taught me? What have I learned about myself since being offline?

  • I learned that I can actually live without the phone. Nearly 4 weeks social media free and for someone who was on the phone A LOT, you can easily separate yourself from it. It wasn’t actually that difficult at all which I was quite surprised. I still used my phone and checked it but not HALF as much.
  • I started to sleep better from not constantly being on the phone. The screen can really effect this and effect your mood too.
  • I felt I had a much more clear headspace and mind.
  • I realised that all this time spent behind the screen is time I’ll never ever get back. It’s time I’ll never get back with Lily. It’s time that I have realised that I’m completely wasting. I don’t want to constantly live my life through a screen 24/7 anymore.

Since my time offline, I have had a lot of time to think. I have made lots of personal decisions regarding life online & offline. I am VERY grateful for social media and without it, I wouldn’t have my blog however I have decided that I will make a few changes going forward.

  • Three very simple changes like turning off all notifications on all my apps, leaving my phone downstairs at night & using a proper alarm clock and not the phone. This will stop me from looking at it, at night and lying there endlessly scrolling and also stop me online shopping in bed too when Sean’s snoring 😉
  • Another thing that I have decided is I will now not be replying at any DM’s. I am not able to filter the ‘good’ and the ‘bad’. I am beyond grateful that people would take the time out to message me but sadly it’s extremely time consuming & well something had to give. I also do not want to continuously read negative messages that I’m sent so it’s best to just cut it altogether. I was always ALWAYS happy to reply to people daily until the messages got too much & then more and more hate started so unfortunately I won’t be replying to DM’s now at all.
  • On the topic of ‘bad messages’ and ‘bad comments’, don’t be surprised if I decide to block you for commenting to provoke a reaction or speaking negatively. I don’t need that shit in my life so it’s delete and block. I don’t have time for it. It’s pathetic and petty, if you don’t like me, don’t follow. SIMPLE!
  • I realised that the more I share online, the more hate I get so I have decided going forward to share less. I want to have more time for REAL life not ONLINE life.

To the 95% of you that are lovely amazing humans, thank you for following my ‘journey’ or whatever you want to call it 😀 To everyone that has messaged me in the past 4 weeks with kind messages, thank you from the bottom of my heart. I had tears in my eyes reading so many of the messages one day as I just couldn’t believe how supportive and lovely so many of you are. What I also realised was, that so many of you have followed me for YEARS which is just so incredible. I do my blog and share my posts for people to watch/read/enjoy. I love writing and if you’ve followed me from the start, you’ll know that is my main reason why I starting blogging in the first place. For me sharing photos on Instagram is just an extension of this. I will still be posting to Instagram stories/posts but I will be focusing a lot on writing between now and the end of the year.

Thank you so much again to everyone who did care that I was offline, messaged and does really enjoy following me, it really meant a lot.

Love Aoibhe xxx


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