I haven’t been exactly shy when it comes to my thoughts on social media and the positive and negative aspects it’s played on my life. From being a supportive part of my job and industry, to being a breeding ground for comparison, inauthenticity, and so on; like it or not, it’s a large part of our society.

I’ve given social media so much thought, and what I always come back to is one thing: balance. Yes, it’s imperative for my job and I’m incredibly grateful for it. It’s also clearly something that can bring up negative emotions and vibes in my life. So how do I use it in a way that serves, while not taking away from my peace? Balance – and social media breaks.

I’m excited to use 2019 and this platform to continue to share my personal thoughts on such topics, and I thought it made sense to start the year with this beast of a subject! Here are some of the reasons I believe in the power of social detoxes and why I suggest taking your own.

It reminds you what’s important

Over Christmas, Freddie and I had the intention of taking true time off. We honestly haven’t been in one place for this long in years and we wanted to savor family and all things NYC as we celebrated the holidays and rang in the new year. With focusing on only us, family, and what makes us happy, it shed light on the little things. Like hanging with our niece in our pajamas, making meals at home just us 2 and cuddling up to a movie, and picking up flowers and coffee on a chilly day in the city.

With taking a step back from social media and my phone altogether, it was a wonderful reminder that the phone isn’t what brings me happiness. Or what’s most important at the end of the day!

It shows you that life goes on

In my industry, there’s a deep stress on keeping things consistent, including my social feed. And while I’m a major proponent of keeping content streaming in for you all, there are ways around constant real-time manpower. By taking a break (or pre-planning content once in a while), you realize that life still goes on without you having to shoot and share new content every day. I’m lucky enough to have an amazing readership that is still there even if I don’t post for a few days – and I’d bet that your following or community is the same.

I think we can all understand and appreciate the need for breaks and will support people as they chose to do that. Thank you all for that, by the way!

It refreshes your skills

One big lesson I learned in 2018 was that creativity needs a break to survive and function optimally. I even wrote about it here. For my creativity to stay healthy and flourishing, I absolutely need to step back from the create create create lifestyle. I need time to rest that part of my brain, to get inspired, and to exercise other parts of my being. Even if you’re not necessarily creative, I imagine taking a break from the feed can refresh your own skills.

It’s good for your body

Let’s not pretend that scrolling thumbs aren’t a serious issue! My thumbs and hands in general get extremely tense after I’ve been using social media for too long, and I’m betting you’re the same? Between that, the tech neck epidemic, and what screens can do for our eyes (and ahem, crows’s feet!), it’s a chance to let health be a priority.

It lets you get bored

I read the question “when was the last time you were bored?” a few months ago and it’s come back to me often. When we were children, we’d get bored on the regular. Remember? From there we’d creatively find ways to spend of our time. Usually that meant finding something that made us happily internally, whether it was painting or playing with dolls or outside in the yard.

I find it terrifying that whenever I get bored, I reach for my phone to scroll – even if I’m bored for a single second while waiting in line! By taking a break, you sort of reset yourself to get bored. I won’t lie – it’s uncomfortable at first, but then it’s all kinds of amazing. I found myself stretching, reading, taking walks, making meals, playing piano, and so many other hobbies that I so often put off in favor of my phone. Here’s to boredom and what it can bring back into our lives!

And remember, it’s all about balance. It’s a break, not a breakup; the feed will be waiting for your return and the Earth will keep spinning. I promise, my loves.

Are you someone who takes social media breaks? If so, when was the last time? What did you gain from stepping away?

Photography by Freddie Cipoletti