A day in the dark

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Skyler Black

The proper functioning world has been brought up by ever-changing technology that shapes the lives of the people in it. More than half of our lives are spent staring at an illuminated screen scrolling, typing and posting whatever we please. Social media has transformed how we interact with each other in leaps and bounds. While I write this, I am using a piece of machinery that has access to all of the information in the world that fits into a small bag. Being surrounded by this technology changes you as a person and taking a break from it is almost necessary.

Over the weekend, I spent 24 hours without computers, phones, televisions and all other electronics. This was some of the most refreshing time that I have spent lately. Without constant stimulation from frequently checking my phone and images on a television screen, I found it easier to think clearly. So how did I survive this day when the majority of us need to use technology everyday of the week. I will admit, doing this over the weekend made it a little bit easier. The first and hardest thing to get rid of was my telephone. I forced myself to turn it on airplane mode so I would not get any notifications and contact of any kind.

A large amount of activity that I do outside of a computer or television screen is normally limited to my time spent on campus getting from place to place. I was able to change that by starting the day off earlier instead of staying in bed looking at all of the new information on my Twitter feed. I was able to go running, clean my room, read a book and relax outside. Yes, there were periods of time where I sat wondering if I needed to check up on all of my ‘friends’ on Facebook and if that one tweet that I sent out go any responses. But I knew that if I caved in, then I would just be proving that social media addiction is a real thing. “If you find that you are becoming so absorbed in social media that you are neglecting work or school, ignoring your family and pets, and withdrawing from people and activities you used to enjoy, you may have a problem,” Bradford Health Services said.

I can probably guess what the majority of you are thinking right about now. But what if there was an emergency? Simple solution. Before starting this, I told my parents and significant other what the plan was and that they could contact me through my roommates. The next step was to ensure that I would not watch any television or use my laptop. After that, it was just trying to find things to replace the time that would normally be spent on technology.

Saturday was a day of productivity and overall recharging. Without being distracted by social media, television shows and video games, I was able to focus on what I needed to do that day. According to MedicalNewsToday.com, one in four people worldwide are connected to some type of social media. One of the largest social media websites, Facebook, has been found in studies to feed anxiety. By relieving myself of this anxiety throughout the day, I felt more energized. Stepping back from technology every once in awhile is a great way to take stock in what is necessary in your life. Your are able to look at things with new eyes and take a breath. I take my days one at a time but I refuse to let technology be the most important thing in my life.

Illustration by JD McCarthy