Filling up Time

A couple of weeks ago, I was able to take the plunge on removing all of the "big name" social media. This has been a cool step for me, and mostly kind of a nothingburger if I'm being honest. I already wasn't really using Facebook, my Twitter use was minimal (because, of all of the platforms, Twitter is the one with the most potential for "addiction"), and Instagram was an on-again, off-again thing for me. Mostly I am a lurker on these platforms anyway.

In any case, my Facebook account is no more, and the same is true for Twitter. My Instagram account technically exists but only because I don't want someone using my standard handle (@cdbaca), and I kept up my final story about leaving IG "for good" (one can only hope).

The frustrating part of this experience for me is that I've noticed how easy it is to fill up time with other useless junk. Inasmuch as I am a Twitter junkie, I'm similarly a Reddit junkie. There's new content everyday! I can follow the subs I want to follow! There are new topics to discover all the time!

The problem with this, of course, is the potential for infinite (doom)scrolling, just like anywhere else. It's a mind-waste/time-fill, and I'm just using it more now that I can't scroll Instagram on my phone. That and once I get bored with Reddit, I'll do that weird mindless thing where I check all the websites I normally check: NPR, Gmail, Lifehacker/Gizmodo, etc., and then do the circle again.

That's frustrating. What am I filling up my time for? Is it just because my brain is looking for something to consume and trying to avoid boredom (I expect that's the case)? I want to find some balance here: I recognize I can't simply think and be serious all the time. Sometimes it's probably alright to go mindless for a few minutes. I just don't want it to be for two-ish hours a day -- that is, if my screentime to report from Apple is to be believed.

Tagged: social media, existentialism,