Confessions of a Millenial: Digital Fatigue
It feels almost like I’m living inside my little tiny apps on my screen in my own little made-up world.
It is time to fall off the digital wagon and say “This is f*cking stupid. I want to talk to real humans. My fingers and my eyes hurt. Instead of punching the little tiny letters on my HD 4.7 inches and 16:9 Retina Display I want to be touching limbs, cheeks and yes, sometimes, genitalia. People have sex online, for f*ck sake. WTF?! Although, I must admit I’m grateful for the porn sites, sometimes. sniff sniff (devil smiley face.)
Where is it?? Oh ok, I see the blue cover (relief)… here it is. I look at it for the 56th time to see if any “important” notifications came in.
I check again in 30 seconds…
Nobody loves me.
Shit, oh well. No one liked my photo on Instagram in the last 5 seconds and no one has messaged me about it either. What a shit day.
I press my right thumb on the iPhone’s home button (so awesome that it can do that!) and see all the pretty apps appear on the screen like magic. But I know where I’m going…
It just drags me in… Like a drug. My ego needs it.
I don’t want to go there but I can’t help myself…
One last time I click on the little blue rounded square with the little “f” and my timelines appears with all my real and fake friends posting shit I don’t really care about.
But eyes involuntarily take me to the little “bell” and I see no red little circle telling me how many useless things people have tagged me in, commented on my photos or liked them or, even worse, posted some stupid shit in one of 59 groups I’m part of.
I do this activity pretty much 25 times per day (once per hour plus a couple more times when I’m posting something “important.”)
And so I end up miserable thinking that no one really likes me and of all the reasons I don’t get attention on social media.
How did I get here… not sure.
“I should have used the ‘Lark’ filter instead of the ‘Clarendon’ one… hmmm.. Oh! Maybe I should have made a collage of different photos… Let me edit that caption — I think I could do better than that. Shit, I forgot to tag that one person who wasn’t in the photo but was part of the group…”
On some days I get really excited about seeing 37 notifications, but then I realize how foolish I was because NONE of those were actually relevant.
On other days I scroll through my feed and I honestly don’t give a shit about what’s going on with other people’s lives.
“Jeez, can you stop bitching about f*cking Trump already and focus on what you can do today to improve the situation? This slap in your face happened for a reason because it’s time to wake the f*ck up and give your children a better future…”
I am not sure when the #seflie trend is going to go away because I’m REALLY tired of it.
I wish there was a different kind of social media that would only show how shitty people’s lives actually are or how miserable they feel at least once per day. Cause I do. About myself and about the world. But I don’t see the point in sharing it cause then I would get either a pat on the back and make others feel better about themselves or I will get ignorant “non-likers” to feel better about themselves too.
What about ME?!
Or even better, there should be a third kind of social media where people are required to post one positive thing and the follow by one negative thing. It will not let you post two consecutive positive things. You gotta be miserable and sad and angry sometimes… Don’t you?!
But seriously, I understand why people remove their Facebook accounts and “disappear.” It feels almost like I’m living inside my little tiny apps on my screen in my own little made-up world. Thank God I didn’t get into Twitter and Snapchat and I still don’t get what’s the point. IG stories?! Damn, that is the new cool thing! WTF?!
I’m reading the book about Elon Musk and really liked a quote that says smth along the lines of “while Zuckerberg is trying to figure out how to update the little notification icon so it looks prettier, Musk is figuring out how to take humans to Mars…” I hope you see the irony.
Don’t get me started on the whole internet marketing world where everyone has gone f*cking crazy on likes and followers and Facebook ads. Everyone is hacking the shit out of their headlines and subject lines.
Some have figured out that spam filters now do not allow ellipses (these guys: “…”) or ALL CAPS in their emails so they are avoiding those altogether. So like imagine writing something without actually being able to express yourself through punctuation. YEAH, THAT WOULD BE THE SAME AS SPEAKING BUT NOT BEING ABLE TO RAISE OR lower YOUR VOICE. That would defeat the whole point of speaking, wouldn’t it?
So they tell the copywriter to find another way to make a long pause… or to make a HUGE POINT. That is ridiculous. Instead of focusing on writing truly amazing copy that people would want to read and would sell their last pair of underwear to HEAR FROM YOU, they tell him to just avoid ellipses and CAPS. Ok, that was all about the IM world that I’m sick of. LOL
IT IS TIME.
Well, I think at least it is time for me :) The rest of the world will follow, I am sure. It will take time. But we will wake up one day and say “WTF happened?!”
See, we sit and complain about missing true human connection, not finding a really good boyfriend, not getting a real job we love and about everything else that we won’t be able to do and get if we don’t stop staring into the screen.
As humans, we are not wired to form strong bonds without the “eye-to-eye” and without the traditional hand-shake. You might think these are old days and we’re moving now to online banking and online deals…
But the truth is we haven’t used the iPhone for long enough to be able to do that yet. Maybe in 300 years… but quite possibly in 1,000 years, we will be ready. I am not sure I would like to live in a world like that.
(Un)fortunately we still live in a world where nothing will replace and good traditional “let’s talk business here” kind of a thing. That’s why it’s really hard to build a remote business. Possible, but really hard. People need to be with people. People are not wired to sit in front of their laptops for eight to ten hours a day and then stare into their phones for the other eight.
Maybe the digital world is indeed helping the introverts and provides them an escape. But I am an extrovert and it just doesn’t work for me. I tried really hard. Eight hours a day, 40 hours a week, 20 days a month and 12 months a year. I’m done. No more, por favor.
“Done” in the sense that I am consciously aware of what this digital age does to me and the others. I am also consciously aware that I can’t escape it either. Sorry, but I still like to shave my armpits and take really good hot showers and sometimes even have sex in them (no iPhone staring while doing it, please!) ;-)
I am not going to go on an offline strike maybe because I’m not there yet. Maybe because there might be hope. Maybe I have a message to share. But quite possibly, because I am sucked in. My true friends are living in my green little app called whatsapp. But I respect and understand people who go off the grid and I think there will be more and more cases happening.
When I saw “Nosedive” Black Mirror episode I was astonished. Not because it terrified me but because I knew this would be the reality soon. And that is truly scary but I am sure we’ll deal with it. Just like we’ll deal with Trump ;-)
Then I saw the “Passengers” and I was astonished in the same way because I know that this kind of a future is also near. Read the book about Elon Musk and you’ll understand ;)
I am not preaching that we all get offline and go and live in a hippie village or an abandoned island (although that would nice for a while…who’s with me?! ;-) But I am suggesting that we become more and more aware of it.
We delete the unnecessary apps. We clean up our Facebook friend list and we clean up our phones and inboxes and our bedrooms too. Our children will know how to use our new "iPhone 100" before we do. And that is truly awesome.
Seriously, nothing in the new iPhone 7 excites me. Nor do the new Facebook updates. It got kind of old already. If we don’t run this technology world, it will run us :)
Ok, sorry, gotta go… Got a notification just now so can’t write anymore.
OMG, another one! Sorry, really gotta go now.
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