Think about this — Two hours and 22 minutes, 2:22, 144 minutes.
That is the average amount of time per day that Americans spent in 2019 scrolling on FaceBook and Instagram their devices. This number, 2:22, does not include the amount of time spent while on the computer or on a different device, say your tablet versus your phone. This number does not surprise me, but it does make me wonder.
Anyone who knows me well has heard me say that I am not a huge fan of social media – heck I pay someone to make posts for me. I dragged my feet for years before getting a FaceBook account and only did so after a friend who worked as a social media coordinator told me that it was where the world was headed and that if I wanted to reach people for my business, it was what I HAD to do. So reluctantly, I did. Now, I am not here to argue the validity of social media, or preach about “my feelings” and why I don’t care for it. Heck, if I wanted to do that, I could make a big post about it and get everyone to chime in! Yes, I need social media, but no, I don’t need to see what everyone is doing all the time. For me social media is very important because it is how I communicate with YOU and it is how you communicate with me. Like most people, I love seeing the good stuff and appreciate being informed about the important events in your lives.
But, two hours and twenty-two minutes per day scrolling? How does that affect us physically and/or mentally? It is definitely something to think about. Physically, there is yoga for “tech neck” and “scrolly thumbs.” At work, it is suggested that we get up from our desks every 20 minutes, look out 20 feet away and stretch for 20 seconds. Mentally? It can be fun and entertaining to scroll but it can also be depressing and draining. Two hours and 22 minutes is a big part of my day that, in my humble opinion could be spent differently. What could I do differently with that time? How can I avoid falling deep into the rabbit hole? For me, it comes down to mindfulness.
This week I set several intentions with regard to how I am spending my time when I am not working or taking care of home and family. These intentions help me to be mindful of how I am using my time and energy.
1. Five Minutes: Make a “things I want to get done today” list. I am a list person. I love making lists, planning and then crossing things off the list that I have accomplished. Otherwise, days and weeks could pass and I still haven’t taken care of some fairly important things.
2. Twenty Minutes: Sit in morning meditation. I am not going to lie. It has been really difficult for me to focus in meditation these last few months. But I have realized it is the one productive way for me to process my grief and reel in the monkey mind that has been running rampant. It allows me head space to be creative and determine how to move forward.
3. Twenty Minutes: Limit my time social media scrolling. I like the sound of 10 minutes, twice a day. I will let you know how that works out.
4. Sixty Minutes: Practice yoga every blessed day and exercise this body on a regular basis.
5. Fifteen Minutes: Mindfully extend a kindness to someone every day, because it is fun to spread joy (for me and the recipient)!
The above comes to two hours (which gives me 22 extra minutes in case I fall into a scrolling rabbit hole!)
What can you do differently with your time? I urge you to take a look, set an intention or even five and then do your best.
Extending Loving Kindness to all of you!