One of the first things I did yesterday morning was to delete the Facebook and Twitter apps from my phone, as I said I would do. Actually it was the first thing. I’m mildly embarrased to admit that.
My thoughts on the experiment after the first day or so? The holiday season, when everyone is sharing so much common good sentiment, is possibly the worst time to leave Twitter1. Not only is one keenly aware that the party is going on in one’s absence, but all that give and take, that accelerated cross-pollination of links and new ideas: pffft, gone. Twitter is a stimulant, like caffeine, so if you’ve ever gone off coffee and felt that life-is-horribly-dull pit in your amygdala in the wee hours after the fateful decision, you have an idea what it’s like to leave the social internets on Thanksgiving.
No surprise then, that (as far as I’m aware) no one else has gone blog+newsreader-only for the holidays who wasn’t already doing so. The micro-trend will remain micro for the foreseeable future.
One other immediately noticeable effect of turning off the Twitter spigot, though, was to mitigate The Dangerous Effects of Reading (do read that article — I advise this without irony). There are so many interesting things to read out there that, before you know it, your brain is optimized for input, constantly sponging up new ideas.
By drastically cutting the amount of interesting reading I come across, I’ve created more space for my own thoughts. And it turns out that having one’s own thoughts is kind of a prerequisite for creativity. I guess that should have been obvious.
Later today I’ll be recording my next podcast. Look for it early Saturday morning.
I don’t miss Facebook. Well, I really do miss it a lot when Jess posts an exceptionally funny picture of our four-month old. But I can always read the comments and likes over her shoulder. So let no more be said of Facebook. ↩