I made a decision in December that I would do a social media detox (Instagram, Twitter & Facebook) during the month of January. I don’t manage the social media for Shop Brett Robson so I knew taking this time off wasn’t going to hurt my business, & I could fully commit to it. If I’m truly honest with myself, social media had become all consuming in my life.  Instagram & Twitter were my drugs of choice.  I spent most of my time on Instagram. It wouldn’t matter where I was; work; home; out at dinner. When I was not mindlessly scrolling, I would be posting content on my feed & story. And after I’d post, I’d then focus on the numbers. What are the stats?! It truly became unenjoyable & made me feel inferior in so many ways. I didn’t have fun with it anymore. I didn’t know why I was doing it. I also didn’t like the way it made me feel at times.

Every platform has it’s pros & cons, & I wouldn’t say that it was the platforms that made me want to take a break from it all. It was me that simply wanted a time out. And I truly feel like I needed it for my inner peace.  I’ve been on Instagram since 2010 (I think) & Twitter about 2009. I’ve been on Facebook since 2007 so that’s a really long time to be out there like that. And I’ve never taken a break from it. 2018 was a tough year for me personally & professionally. So many great things happened, but there was a ton of crap too. And I spent the year being happy for social media. “Look at me, I’m at Coachella watching Beyonce live! ” I travelled to Italy & Australia for the first time for work. But in the background my life was a shit show to put it mildly. I was miserable.

Being that my business is on the internet, social media has a very important place in my world. But sadly I’ve placed it so high on the totem pole that I barely know how to function without it. And I’m at a place in my life where I acknowledge that that is not ok; & that I need to make some changes for my happiness. 

1 Jan

I woke up this morning & all I have to check is my Whatsapp. I deleted the above mentioned Apps from my phone. I have the urge to download Instagram again – just for today though because maybe I have messages there. Or comments wishing me HNY you know. Surely it’s rude not to respond? I also posted a few bomb pictures on 31st December & I really want to know how they’re doing. I hope people are responding well to the content. My mini vacay in Cape Town was easier; but being back at home I struggle with content because I’m not as social in my everyday life & I spend most of my time at home or at work. My everyday life is boring in my opinion. And that’s also why I don’t share those moments.

I was sitting in quiet reflection by my window around mid-morning & saw that DSW was collecting dirt today. It’s a public holiday, so I didn’t expect it. My immediate thought was that I should tweet about it. I didn’t. But I really wanted to.

2 Jan

I’ve just received another Savage x Fenty lingerie delivery & I have this urge to share it 😭 But obviously I can’t. And won’t. I guess this will just be for me then. Lol what is this life even if I can’t share my purchases with everyone 😫

The first time I bought from Savage x Fenty was partly to support Rihanna, but also because of content. And now I keep buying from the brand because I like the merchandise; the fit; the fabrics. I generated content around the brand already. I keep asking myself the question “Do people even care for me to still post about it?” And should I really be sharing EVERY👏SINGLE👏THING👏I👏BUY👏? I had a discussion with a friend about this, & their argument is that this is what my audience wants. The SAVAGE x FENTY video does have over 10 000 views at this point. What are your thoughts? Do you think everyone constantly sharing what they have makes others feel inferior? Personally, I sometimes feel inferior when I see things online. But at the same time I also love to watch haul videos. It’s like you just can’t win you know. You want to see these things, but they sometimes make you feel bad. And it’s not necessarily things you’re seeing that could make you feel bad. It could be people going on holiday or achieving something in their lives. It’s so easy to sit here & say that we shouldn’t be comparing ourselves to others, but so many of us do it any way.

 

3 Jan

No sweaty gym selfie. How will everyone (especially my trainer) know I’m back to my habitual fitness routine after the holidays? I could totally text my trainer to update him. But what about everyone else that’s been following me? It’s almost as if it didn’t happen if I didn’t share it 🤷🏽‍♀️ How did this become our lives though? This incessant need to share EVERYTHING. What is private anymore? I often think about the next stage in my life. I know I want that private. I decided that a long time ago. But if I can barely go 3 days without wanting to share every little detail about my day, how will I manage a whole other life offline?

4 Jan

It’s becoming a lot easier already. I miss it a little less today. BUT… HUGE BUT. I am becoming a little obssessed with my Sims mobile game. In a way I have latched onto this so that I can distract myself. In reality I should be focusing on the things I set out to do. I have so much on my TO DO list but I am also enjoying the freedom of my leave from work. I am answering a few emails here & there but I’m very much on break. And I am getting some much needed rest.

I’m 5 episodes in on The Bodyguard (Netflix) & I want to talk about it soooo badly. I love a show that I can binge in a day (there are only 6 episodes). This show is great, & I’m not sure why I waited so long to watch it. It’s been on My List since it came out, & I see now why it’s been nominated for more than one award. I usually share shows or movies I am enjoying & it’s killing me that I can’t shout it from the rooftops 😭 I’m such a TV/Movie geek. I could talk about this all day. Would you guys like a Netflix post?

5 Jan

I binged Frontier all day & then finally ventured out to the gym wearing super cute Kheper floral tights. I really need to get back into work mode because I’ll be back in the office in a few days. Being consistent with gym is a start I suppose 🤷🏽‍♀️

6 Jan

Today was a big day for my family so I’m quite happy that I didn’t have the distraction of social media. I got to be fully present with my loved ones. I didn’t realise how much time I spent looking down at my phone instead of in the eyes of the people I love. How sad is that?!

7 Jan

My day has started off with my supplier having dyed my fabric the wrong colour. As in navy vs sky blue LOL. The garment industry is full of moments like this to be honest. Anyway, I’m craving a good old rant on my IG Story. That’s my first instinct. Not because I want sympathy from people. But just to get off my chest. I can’t remember how I used to vent before Snapchat, Instagram Stories & Twitter?!

I started filming a video organizing my open closet shoe/bag section. It took all day, & was not complete. But at least I started 👍🏽

8 Jan

Finished off my video. I cleared out 21 pairs of shoes & 9 handbags. I’m pretty chuffed with myself. Normally, as I clear out items I turn to Instagram for help. Should I keep this? Or toss that? I like getting the opinion of others. I missed this kind is interaction with my audience in particular. It’s probably one of my favourite things to do on social media.

I finally edited my PLT Review Video! Yay! It’s amazing how much you can get done in one go with no distractions. I also started on my posting schedule & TO DO list for February. I really want to make sure I am working smarter this year. I started this blog in 2010, & I’m not happy with where it is right now. I struggled so much in 2018. And truth be told, I can do so much better. This is a goal for me. I just need to work smarter & to also utilize the tools I have at my disposal.

9 Jan

I sent this text to my manager…

1. How is your morning?

2. PLT video uploaded & ready for Feb. PLT Blog post is 80% complete.  Yay me.

3. Already working on my next shopping experience video, House of CB.

I’m on a roll bitch!!!!! 💃

It was my first day back at the office & wow it was slow but I was productive on the blog side of things so that made me happy. And for someone that was awake until 3am (I couldn’t fall asleep) I survived ok.

I feel like I’m asking myself some very important questions with regard to my obsession with social media.

Am I posting for validation? More often than I’d care to admit. Sad, I know.

Should I be sharing less? I think so. Some things should be private.

Do people care whether or not I post? Has anyone even noticed I’m gone? Possibly. You tell me?

What changes will I make when this is over? Surely this will not been in vain. I think this is something I have to think about for the next few weeks.

10 -13 Jan

The past few days have been a blur. At work I’m still on a go slow. I have a ton to do, but moving slowly. Next week will show me who’s boss.

There was an ANC launch or rally this weekend. I stay in central Morningside & they’ve had vehicles driving up & down my street (there are lots of restaurants & coffee shops with people sitting outside). I’m talking girls hanging out of fancy BMWs. And loud ANC music playing in bakkies with huge speakers; & let’s not forget the police vehicles too. My Instagram Story would be so cool if I shared this now.  I intend on staying indoors all weekend because I can’t deal with the amount of people in our city right now. It’s going to be busy everywhere. Even my gym is closed because it’s in the stadium where the rally is being held. These are all topics of discussion my Insta-fam would enjoy.

14 Jan

I let something that shouldn’t have affected me affect me. If I got 1 hour of sleep last night that was a lot. I haven’t struggled with sleeping in such long time, but when I did in the past, I would turn to social media to keep myself entertained as I lay in bed unable to sleep. I know this post is supposed to be about social media but I feel like crap on every level. But at the same time, I’m proud of myself because I haven’t caved.

15/16 Jan

January is often a slow month for my freelance work. However, the past few days I found myself turning down work. I often turn down work because the projects don’t suit me or my audience. But this was purely timing, because it would mean I would have to stop this detox. I’m only half way through, & I feel like I have to continue on the journey.  I also feel like I need it for my sanity. It’s so weird to not know what’s going on with other people. I usually stalk my favourite influencers & friends. What are they wearing? Where are they going? Who are they going with 😉?

17/18 Jan

I’ve spent the past few days working working working. Not much to report. It’s been the usual. I did wear my hair au natural for a few days. LOL. This was interesting. Everyone that saw me either loved it or hated it. I feel like I look like a different person, but you be the judge of that… I’d love to hear your thoughts. And if you haven’t seen my hair care video, watch it here.

19 Jan

I went to dinner with a friend.  We sat for almost 4 hours catching up, laughing & simply enjoying each others company. I don’t often make new friends, but we’ve been friends for under a year & it feels like forever. Being present at dinner, chatting without looking at my phone the whole time was so good.

20 Jan

In 2016 I watched a documentary called Hot Girls Wanted about the amateur porn industry in USA. It followed a few girls & their experiences. Netflix released the Hot Girls Wanted: Turned On docu-series & I wanted to watch more. The first one made me feel sad if I’m being honest. BUT, I like to be aware of what’s going on in the world, & with people. And WOW was I shocked. 4 episodes concentrated on the adult industry, such as porn, cam-ing (I had no idea cam girls existed before this!). But the 2 episodes that I related to were e2 “Love me Tinder” & e6 “Don’t Stop Filming”. I’ve been watching on my iPad mostly when I am osorting my laundry & washing dishes because it was an easy watch – even though it is very heavy content on the mind & heart.

“Love me Tinder” is something I believe many of us can relate to. The guy the episode was focussed on James, a 40-year-old regular guy looking for a hook up. The episode basically followed him around, as he swiped left & right. It showed us how he dated & treated the women he was dating. What stood out for me that people have soooo many options available to them. And having it at your finger tips doesn’t make it any easier. 60% of the women (based on USA) on Tinder want a match, not just a hook up. I’m sure the stats for women are very similar around the world. I know I was on Tinder (years ago) hoping to meet someone that could be more. That’s probably why I got swerved so many times when men realised I’m not down for the hook up LOL. It’s so easy to hide behind our screens & treat people like shit. James would have lets say 5 women in dating rotation for a period of time. So, he would be hooking up & dating all of them simultaneously. But when he wanted a “reset” as he put it, he would post a Snapchat video of him with another girl kissing or whatever so that the 5 women would get the message & realise he’s not interested. Imagine that! Rather than have to deal with each woman face to face or being honest & upfront, he would rather post something on social media so they indirectly get the message. Who’s guilty of that? I know I am. I’ve used my Instagram & Twitter to send cryptic messages to people.Looking back now, I don’t even know why I would do that?!  When it actually came down to James having to face Jessie who was very persistent in seeing him face to face after the drama of it all. He was visibly shook that he hurt her like that. It’s so easy to be cold & calculated behind a screen. But when we deal with people & look into their eyes it’s very different. This episode has definitely made me think differently about the way I treat people when I’m behind the screen. Would I really say some of the things I say? I don’t think so.

The “Don’t stop filming” episode was extremely sad for me to watch. It really made me question humanity. The episode followed 18-year-old Marina would had live streamed her friend being raped on Periscope. I was absolutely shocked. It made me think of how often on social media we see videos of fights & other incidents happening. So often, the first instinct is to film it rather than call the police or help if you can (I’m not saying endanger yourself or others)? The episode was titled “Don’t stop filming” because that was what most of the comments of people watching said. That’s some messed up shit. It makes me wonder if society has always been this way? Or if the internet has simply made us worse because we view so much from behind a screen? What are your thoughts?

 

23 Jan

YAY! My SEPHORA order came in! I’m so excited because I ordered the new Fenty Beauty concealer & setting powder when it launched around 11th January. I am going to film a video using the products. I’m still not sure about what to do with my Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r Foundation. I initially purchased shade 270 (For medium to tan skin with cool undertones) & then I purchased 260 (For medium skin with neutral undertones). I wore 260 the other day, & my face turned grey. Then I wore the foundation again, but then my sister & friend both complimented the shade match. I honestly don’t know what shade I should be wearing. Sometimes when there are too many options & it messes things up. But I’m excited to try the concealer, because your girl’s dark circles have been showing flames lately.

Last year I put out a HOW TO Order Online from Sephora video, & my method of shipping my product via my Shipito address worked. One or two people said it didn’t work for them, but some said it did. So, I took the video down on my channel because I doubted my method. But, after I tried it again earlier this month (and it worked as before), I decided to make the video visible again because it could help you. So, if you’re interested in watching the video, check it out below.

24 Jan

I am not missing it at all. Not even a little. It’s as if this has been my life all along. I wonder how much I’ll be using Instagram when I’m back online? I know that I don’t want to fall into old habits.

25 – 28 Jan

The past few days were a blur of work, gym, family, dinners, friends etc. It was my birthday over the weekend, plus we had a shoot for SBR, so it was a BUSYYY weekend for me! BTW You can shop the new Shop Brett Robson range now!!! Woohoo!

29 / 30 Jan

A friend I haven’t spoken to in a while texted “Are you ok?”. I thought that was sweet. I guess the first thought is that something must be wrong because I kinda disappeared you know.

31 Jan

Last day. WOW. I made it without a hitch. I’m absolutely proud of myself. This past month has been an eye opener. I’m happy I did it my way.

So, what did I learn, & what am I going to do differently?

  • I know now that I can live without social media.  At the beginning of January, I would never have said that. But now, I believe it to be true. If I didn’t have my blog or YouTube channel, I could totally see myself going offline permanently. I most likely won’t stop blogging any time soon, but you never know what the future holds for me.
  • Mindlessly scrolling has got to end! I used to spend so much time scrolling on Instagram & Twitter, but that has no place going forward. I will still look out for the content I enjoy. And I will definitely still scroll the timeline. However, I will be more aware of the amount of time I spend doing it.
  • UNFOLLOW. I am going to be unfollowing any content I don’t enjoy & I’m going to be unapologetic about it. There are so many accounts I follow that are not what I want to see or interact with, but I feel bad because I used to be friends with the person, or I know them or whatever. And truth be told, I could be that for someone else. And it’s really ok if you unfollow me if I am not creating the kind of space you want to be a part of.
  • NO MORE RANTS. No more bringing that negativity to social media. And in my life in general. Positivity breeds positivity.
  • Boundaries are important. I stopped opening DMs on Instagram in March 2018. This will not change. As much as I love interacting & getting feedback, I found that interacting with people privately almost gave them a sense that they could say whatever they want. And as far as I am concerned, if you don’t like me or my content, you should unfollow me. Also, I’m just not going to tolerate bullshit! Period.
  • No more comparisons.  I am consciously making an effort not to compare myself to others. We all need to stop that. We see what people choose to let us see. We are not seeing the bad days, or shitty moments in their lives. So often in the digital world we sit back & compare ourselves to the next blogger/influencer. Questioning why he/she was chosen to work with a certain brand. Or why they’re attending a certain event but you weren’t even invited. Or even envying the growth they’re experiencing on their platforms. From now on, I am going to stay in my lane, & focus of my goals.
  • Back to basics. I started this blog in 2010. I was unemployed & needed an outlet for my creativity. Everything I did, was because I wanted to do it. I’m going  back to that version of me as a blogger. I am going to create the kind of content that I want to see. And I’m excited for it.

This post was important for me to share for so many reasons.  I think it’s important that I share some realness with you. My life is not perfect, nor am I. I also think it’s important that we recognise the bad habits we develop within ourselves. And lastly, I wanted to share that it’s ok to take time for yourself. Do what you need to do.

Thanks so much for sticking around to the end of the post. I know this is very text heavy, but I wanted you to experience the past month with me, & get a true sense of what my social media detox was like. Could you see yourself going offline for 1 month? I will definitely be doing this again.