UPDATE: I did delete/deactivate a lot of things the night of New Years Day. I deleted Twitter, Reddit, and Ello. I deactivated Facebook, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram. At the time of this update, it has been 12 hours, most of which I was asleep. We shall see how this experiment goes…
I like to start off the new year with a clean slate (as much as possible). Here are a few things I am doing to make that happen:
Delete/Erase Social Media. (of “If you can’t Tweet ’em, join ’em”)
Delete Twitter, it’s for garbage people. Argue all you want, if you have and actively use a twitter account, I have put you in that camp. Is it a good idea to have a searchable database of everything you have ever thought? How has that worked out for people? No one ever gets a job from a tweet, usually it is discovered they were some kind of racist/homophobic 8 years ago and don’t get a job. Unless you are Trump and use it as a fever-dream-opinion-box. Try to have less in common with him in 2019. If you must keep twitter for some made-up excuse, search around for a service that automatically deletes old tweets. Meh, if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em and fight them at their own game. So here’s the deal: I have a twitter. I am going to flood it with as much inspiration as I can. When I am not doing that, I am going to be contacting the people/companies that I disagree with and holding their feet to the fire. We will see how long it lasts. I feel like I am getting in the mud with the rest of the pigs. You can follow me at @TheRealSPA (until I delete it. a smart over/under bet would be some time around the end of January). I am using Tweet Delete to get rid of old tweets (if I ever get that far), you can choose a time frame from one wee to one year. I chose 3 months. We shall see…
Delete Facebook. I know you won’t, but I thought I would start there and negotiate. Use the Chrome extension to delete/hide/unlike all your old junk on Facebook. Consider removing the app from your phone as long as possible. Try not being that invested on what people post. Facebook has knowingly giving your information to third party vendors, made money off of doing so, and only feels bad about it when they get caught. Now that we know it is happening, you are opting-in to that behavior.
Unsubscribe. This takes a while. I already started this one. I normally have a habit of just automatically deleting every email I don’t want to read. I have stopped doing that and started taking the extra little time to click that unsubscribe option in the email. It is very simple to do if you are using the native iPhone email client, most of the time the option is right at the top of the email. In the long run, it will pay off with less and less to unsubscribe. Then, as you think about causes/companies over the year, you can add ones back that you miss.
Unfollow. You may be noticing the “Scorched Earth” approach I have to these thing. I burn it down to the ground and then slowly add back what I miss. I did that years ago with Facebook, I still barely ‘follow’ or ‘like’ anything there, mostly because I spend barely any time there. As for Instagram, I am there more, but I have started unfollowing anyone that I know is not creating interesting content. If I routinely scroll by their posts, I have started unfollowing them.
In 2019, I am going to go back through the books I own and reread them. It is part justifying why I have kept them and part revisiting old friends.
Subscribe to a Newspaper.
A good newspaper. Not the local re-branded USA Today with local little league coverage. I mean, you can, but also subscribe to a real newspaper that has a team of real journalists that are fighting for the truth. I subscribe to The Washington Post, they send email newsletters, have a daily podcast, and an app. Stop relying on your news exposure from what someone you went to high school posts on social media. Be active in your information consumption. You can also curate the News app on your phone/laptop to provide you with news from sources you like and trust.
Listen To Podcasts.
Think of something you want to know more about, or an area you want motivation, or people or things you find humorous. There is a podcast for that. I subscribe to more podcasts than I could ever listen to. True Crime, Politics, Classic Radio Drama, Humor, the categories are endless. It will transform your commute or any other down-time. I am that guy that laughs to himself on the bus.
Stop Giving A Fuck.
This has already happened, more or less. I just need to be a bit more active in my thought process. I don’t worry about what people think or if feelings are going to be hurt, I cannot control those things. I live my life, be honest, not evil, and the rest is the rest.